State Sponsored Football

#1

Manchester City: Uefa not investigating club over financial fair play

Is this the way forward? Should FFP apply? Are Uefa as bent as a nine-bob note?

questions questions questions…

What sort of team would we have with all the savings Brexit promises to give us?

#2

I think it can be taken as read that UEFA are no different than FIFA, two cheeks of the same arse. They only thought up the so called ‘financial fair play’ as a sop, to give the impression that they were onside with the average football fan on the street, and would be addressing the problem of a handful of clubs openly throwing ridiculous amounts of money around, clearly not running the club on an accepted business footing, ie, the requirement by UEFA re break-even requirements which require clubs to balance their spending with their revenues. And the implications this has for the 99.9%, the rest of the clubs in Europe. It is not called financial doping for nothing, doping just takes the form of money instead of drugs. ‘The situation in which the owner of a sports club or franchise invests his or her own personal wealth into securing highly talented players to better their chances of success, rather than relying on the revenue the franchise is able to generate for itself’.

There are billions sloshing around in football, a goodly proportion of which would undoubtedly prove to be unaccountably gained if push came to shove with the appropriate authorities. Let’s face it, how did Abramovitch suddenly come from being a bit part politician in Georgia without 50p to scratch his arse with, to having billions of dollars pretty much overnight. Likewise the Man U owners with their shady links to organized crime in the States, warned out of Las Vegas etc. Nobody rolled up their sleeves and did a hard days collar for the 180 mill to buy Neymar that’s for sure! Likewise 90 mill for Lukaku etc etc. It’s money laundering in plain sight. Manchester United, Chelsea, Man City and Liverpool were accused of engaging in “financial doping” by a Parliamentary Committee in 2009. Eight years ago FFS. They reported ‘ludicrous levels of borrowing’, and the use of profits to service large debts. All totally in breach of FFP. Short term success being bought at the expense of long term financial stability. It would take a scandal of massive proportions for anything to be done about this, influential members of the powers that be running European football are making too much money out of it, and are too deeply compromised if the shit should hit the fan. As you say CS, bent as a nine bob note. Nothing to see here, move along!

6 Likes
#3

Financial Fair Play is a misnomer if you think it meant that it would allow all football clubs to compete on an even basis. Its purpose was to stop clubs from spending money they didn’t have and going bankrupt. Generally, it has accomplished that goal. This, of course, means that the rich clubs can continue to spend lots of money–at least so long as they continue to have their high levels of commercial income. It also explains why Southampton’s new ownership is not that significant. Even if they were willing to kick in the maximum amount of legal money each year it will still be only 10 to 13 million pounds, depending on exchange rates and the actual cost of the academy.

FFP was never intended to address money laundering. That being said, I am not entirely clear that money laundering is what is really going on. Take the money paid for Neymar. Even if that is money that the UAE directly put into the club against UEFA rules, it is not money being laundered. The UAE earned the money legitimately under its laws and the money is not being cleansed so that a criminal enterprise can make use of it. Instead it went to Barcelona, Neymar, and his agent. When orgainzed crime launders money, they end up with most of the money still in their possession, but looking legal.

As for the Glazers and Man U, they did a conventional leveraged buy out where they put the debt from borrowing the money to buy the club into the club itself. I think this kind of leveraged buy out should be illegal in all situations, but it is not. (Currently, the purchase of Southampton FC does not appear to be a leveraged buy out, but if a whole bunch of new debt suddenly appears on the books, that appearance will change.)

The Man U buy out occurred before FFP so it did not violate FFP. I am not sure that it would have anyway since it appears that despite the negative effects on the finances of Man U, the club has manager to pay down its debt out of current profits (including paying the Glazers lots of money for doing nothing useful).

As foir financial doping https://www.collinsdictionary.com/us/dictionary/english/financial-doping

The type of doping at issue at Chelsea and Man City was the kicking of money in. It definitely occurred but it was not against FFP because it mostly occurred before those rules took effect. Man City did get punished for it at one point in the past. They may again. The fact that UEFA says they are not investigating Man City now does not mean that they will not be investigating them in the near future. Or it is possible that Man City showed UEFA enough of its current books to convince them that they will be compliant by the end of the year. PSG, is a different matter.

http://www.espnfc.com/story/3194116/uefa-launches-formal-investigation-into-psg-for-financial-fair-play

PSG undoubtedly is counting on being able to amortize the Neymar purchase over the 5 year life of the contract, and keep in balance in the next couple of years with sales, and (in my opinion) fake commerical income. They may even be hoping to win the Champions League in the next couple of years and possibly risk being barred from it in later years. Who knows?

I don’t think they corruptions inherent in all this is where you think it is. Possibly UEFA officials are personally profiting from this above and beyond their inflated salaries (after all that happened in the Americas) but I think the primary fear is that if they try to exercise too much control over the big clubs they will break off and form a super league. But I doubt the La Liga complaints about Man City and PSG were made over the objections of Barcelona and Real Madrid. So all the big clubs are not in on this particular type of (potential) cheating.

My prediction is that if PSG is actually caught cheating, they will be heavily punished as a second time offender. Their ability to avoid that problem is probably dependent on whether they have a convincing justification for the commerical revenue.

Sorry for the unexpected long ramble. I was surprised myself but it was this or reading trial transcripts the evening I returned from my vacation (holiday).

9 Likes
#4

3 points

  • excellent post @redslo thanks.

  • Unless things change on the investment front then Saints are likely to remain minnows in the EPL

  • hope you had a suitably refreshing holiday (vacation)

1 Like
#5

Downvoted for the use of the word “minnows”…will upvote if you appologise and can come up with a more satisfying description. :lou_wink_2:

#6

@lifeintheslowlane in hindsight minnows was probably the wrong word, though in context it seemed apt.

How about “small fry in comparison with PSG, Citeh etc unless we start to play the “game” and buy big to win”?

Now upvote me you bastard…

#7

Nope not good enough…I was thinking more of “striving to make up the gap”…if you write that I’ll upvote you. :lou_lol:

1 Like
#8

“striving to make up the gap”…

Jeez, I’m such a vote whore

:lou_facepalm_2:

3 Likes
#9

There you are…don’t look on it as prostituting yourself…more smoothing troubled waters. :lou_lol:

#10

or ‘snapping at the heels …’ :lou_wink_2:

#11

Voted down for begging :lou_lol:

#12

Are you sure that Liverpool should be in that list?

#13

But I did have my fingers crossed behind my back. Don’t ask how I typed the post…

1 Like
#14

Careful…this could get ugly.

1 Like
#15

Yes. They were named by the parliamentary committee in 2009.

#16