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June 2021

This is what you get when a country owns a club

By Tony Attwood

So say Arsène Wenger, reaching the same conclusion as we did.  When you let a country own a club, all chaos is bound to cut loose.  Likewise when you let a country like Qatar hold the World Cup then all chaos is bound to cut loose.  When that country then suffers a blockade from its neighbouring countries, then all chaos is bound to cut loose.

As Mr Wenger said, the transfer is “beyond calculation and beyond rationality.”

PSG have been owned by Qatar since 2011, and the move is seen by many as a way of Qatar trying to show that the blockade of the country is not going to stop the flow of money.  Its preparation of stadia for the World Cup has resulted in many deaths and injuries, with workers used as a form of modern slave labour, unable to leave their employment, forbidden membership of a trade union, and unable to resign and leave.

As Mr Wenger points out, “Once a country owns a club, everything is possible. It becomes very difficult to respect the financial fair play because you can have different ways or different interests for a country to have such a big player to represent a country. It can’t justify the investments and looks unusual for the game.

“Apart from that, we are not in a period any more where you think, in some places: ‘If I invest that, I will get that back.’ We are beyond that. The number today involves a lot of passion, pride, public interest and you cannot rationalise that any more.

“It also looks like the inflation is accelerating. We crossed the 100 million euros line last year and, only one year later, we’re crossing the 200 million line. When you think that Trevor Francis was the first £1 million player and that looked unreasonable, it shows you how much distance and how far we have come, how big football has become. It’s beyond calculation and beyond rationality.”

Neymar’s salary is said to be around £520,000 a week.  Mr Wenger continued, “You don’t look at the numbers in their absolute value any more.  Football has been for a long time out of normal society and the numbers are like the NBA in basketball, so it’s not comparable to normal life anymore.

“It was already out of context of society so, after, it just becomes a bit extra. You cannot calculate what it brings in anymore. It’s just a number. We still live with rationality. We are not the only ones. I think 99% of the clubs do that but, of course, we cannot compete at that level.

“Today, a player is worth what the club can afford to spend and I would say that the price of a player depends on the identity of the buyer. You cannot put it in the context of the market. It is the financial potential of the buyer that decides the price of the player.”

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Meanwhile in the afternoon’s developments the transfer has gone through, so we are told with the 222 million euros being paid.  In a pointed comment Barcelona said, “they will pass on to Uefa the details of the above operation so that they can determine the disciplinary responsibilities that may arise from this case.”

Meanwhile the French League had asked La Liga to abide by the Fifa rules and its responsibilities and accept the transfer.  But the Spanish League is focused on FFP and wants action from Uefa.

Luis Suárez is said to have followed Lionel Messi with Instagram messages to Neymar, saying “My friend I wish you the best in everything that comes!!! Also thank you for your support, for everything that I learned with you and for the unique moments that we spent together!!!! Keep like this and never change love you little bro.”



11 comments to This is what you get when a country owns a club

  • Dom

    just had a looksee at the Le Grove site. Can’t believe the negative feeling most of them carry regarding AW. What a load of cobblers…they even manage to turn the Neymar story and Wenger’s comments as negatives. Do these people actually support Arsenal or do they come from Qatar ?

  • Richard

    Saw it Dom and I dropped a comment regarding that.Of course we can’t compete with Qatarwhores.Neymar transfer is really insane.Can’t really fathom it.Goes to show that players day aren’t loyal anymore but money whores.

  • Super Singh

    Football is fast turning into WWE pantomime, wrongful assumption that only the top clubs play football? Personally speaking, I think Champions league is structured for the elite clubs only and is fast becoming boring.

    Buying all the best players is akin to school football when the big boys picked all the best players, then walloped the weaker kids.

  • Porter

    I always thought that eventually football would eat itself. However it’s happening at a much quicker rate than I thought. I can see a time when the lesser clubs turn their backs and the whole house of cards comes tumbling down.

  • Chris

    it is interesting that in the US, the capitalistic society, the NFL (american football) and the MBA (basketball)- and other sports – have a salary cap. And a draft system.
    Thus the owners – because the league is controlled by them – have chosen to level the field somewhat.

    The result is that in both those leagues, big teams come and go, everybody has a chance to shine.

    How come that in the country of so much wealth, such a big unified market, and brutal capitalism the owners have decided to refrain excesses ?!?!

  • SamuelAkinsolaAdebosin

    With the breaking news that is now emerging on the internet and is reporting that Neymar’s transfer to PSG has gone through as planned when Neymar’s representatives decided to pay the clause activating cheque of the sum £198m for Neymar transfer to PSG directly to Barcelona, who in turns have accepted the payment that was rejected earlier today to had been refused to collect by the La Liga authorities who to no avail as it looked now to have wanted to become the enforcers of the FFP on behalf of Uefa who didn’t give them such mandate to perform. The question that begs for answer now is, have the La Liga authorities made a big fool of themselves by refusing to carry out their statuary mandate of collecting transfer money on behalf of the Spanish selling club and hand it over to them? Yes! I think they have. And in view of this delerration of official duty and function as mandated for Li Liga personell to perform, the head of the La Liga body who started this rangling should resign with immediate effect imo. For, it has become very glaring now that Barcelona did not send him to do the work for them he has set out to do. He has wanted to in disguise block Barcelona from getting that huge £198m in transfer money for transferring their Neymar to PSG which Barca want to collect and move on. But La Liga head wanted to scuttle it to the benefit of Real Madrid which I think Barca saw and quickly close the deal. But after collecting this huge sum of money, Barca cannot give any bull shit now of reporting PSG to Uefa for violating FFP rules. If so, let them return the money and lodge their complaints. Let Uefa do it’s FFP job by itself without being harassed to do it.

  • alan B'stard MP (@alanBStardmp)

    owned by a country? The country is privately owned by the Emir

  • Edda1971

    I find it kinda funny, that when Chelsea and Man City came and turned other clubs players heads with double or triple wages it was just how the game is now and we must learn to live with it. Now that the same thing happen with one of the “big” clubs it is a disgrace ? The one positive thing is that the bubble will burst one time, and this transfer can make that happen sooner rather than later. As one wise man said earlier today : The price of a player depends on the identity of the buyer. Walker to Man City for 50m+ is a good example.

  • Mandy Dodd

    When Barca try and take the moral high ground, you know the game is in serious trouble, but I doubt if UEFA will do very much at all.
    FFP is dead, deceased, is no more,pushing up daisies etc
    Even in this league, a club like Everton seem to be able to get round rather a lot.

  • Gideone

    The whole FFP situation kinda sound like one of the nursery rhymes I learnt as a child:

    “FFP is dead, and gone to its grave
    Hum, ha, gone to its grave
    They planted a Neymar tree over its head
    Hum, ha, over its head…
    … (somebody help complete this 😉 )”

    Who would have thunk (except for paranoid Untold i.e.)?