With Manchester United continuing to struggle in the Premier League just days after blowing away Feyenoord in the Europa League, the debate as to the merits of Premier League involvement in Europe's second tournament has resurfaced.
United's season has become one comical chicken-and-egg-type scenario; their form in England shows no signs of improvement, pushing them further away from the top four and Champions League football. As such, they're forced to focus more on Europa League football - perhaps their only chance to return to the Champions League next season - which it would seem it having an adverse effect on their domestic form.
Perhaps they're just a bit shite, but Gary Neville is pointing his finger at the Europa League conundrum for now.
The former United right-back and current Sky pundit, obviously frustrated by his old side's 1-1 draw with West Ham at Old Trafford, described the Europa League as a "killer" on Twitter, before asking his followers to suggest to him teams who have managed to excel in both the EL and domestic competitions.
That EL is a killer!! Always has been and always will... Twitter please educate me on a team that's excelled in the league and been in it.
— Gary Neville (@GNev2) November 27, 2016
Dundalk star Chris Shields, fresh off another League of Ireland title win and in the midst of an extraordinary European campaign, had the most critically-acclaimed response to Neville's query.
we were grand bud 😎 pic.twitter.com/XHnFOY0seW
— Chris Shields (@Big_Shields6) November 27, 2016
Rinsed, via four words and an emoji.
Dundalk, even while battling Cork City for the league title and ultimately succeeding, became the second ever Irish side to qualify for the group stages of a European competition, and have amassed four points from their opening five EL fixtures.
Other clubs on the same schedule as the Premier League have also excelled both domestically and in Europe's second tier; Sevilla finished third in La Liga when they won the competition in 2007, with Spurs enjoying a Premier League-best season in 2015/16 despite involvement in the Europa League.
Of course, that's not to say both sides might have gone a couple of places better at home without the strain of European football, but they at least proved qualifying for Champions League football is achievable while competing in the its bastard sibling throughout the season.