UEFA Financial Fair Play?

……really? ‘Fair Play?’

Platini’s drive to a wedged stake into the heart of perceived English clubs success in the Champions League, is going to hurt everyone, more so some other clubs that what was originally thought. Its all very moral to suggest that everyone must be self funding Platini is trying to introduce something that even EEC or is that EU or for us oldies The Common Market has failed to do over 30 odds years, even his historical Emperor Napoleon tried and failed with the communising many facets of Europe.

We are all grumbling to some sort on how FFP is going to affect our clubs, and at Chelsea it will make a significant implication, excluding that there are more holes in the plan than in Swiss cheese, and its time line delay schedule is there as a life line to aid many to get their house in order. It is essential that we get more, alternative and bigger revenue streams. A new bigger stadium is close to being essential. The new Premier League mega bonus on rewards money is a major windfall for us all.

So we are very much under the microscope……. however FFP means FAIR PLAY…. what is enforced on us is to be enforced on others, and maybe why you might still find some amazing transfers this summer of crazy numbers (exclude Arsenal rich club deep pockets short arms). Let’s be clear about it, Manchester City and Paris St Germain hold the biggest wallets, we can compete and have an advantage of our own being established success and current European Champions.

We all know that Spain is in deep trouble with its economy and suffers unemployment as such a high rate it is causing grief though out the country, as a nation its banking sector is on the brink looking at European bail outs to survive. However looking at La Liga clubs they have a moral responsibility to get their act in order. Six clubs in La Liga are in bankruptcy proceedings, (Rayo Vallecano, Racing Santander, Real Betis, Zaragoza, Granada and Mallorca) as well as another six in the second division.

Real Madrid are in debt to the sum of 589 million Euros (up from 479 million last year)

Barcelona’s debts are 578 million Euros (up from 450 million last year)

However Spain’s elite clubs owe 752 million euro to their tax man! Its all very nice to hear that the government announced that they will ensure football pays for its debts, but don’t know how. For years Spanish clubs have been spending beyond their means, and the debt is getting  bigger. In what should be a point of note to us, Valencia with only 39,000 members invested in a new stadium. This was 2007 when the Spanish property market was booming, now its all fallen apart as nobody wants the old ground.

Barcelona and Real Madrid have an advantage of both being ahead or top of the tree in world revenue, they also have a dominant position in Spanish TV revenues both around  140 million Euros and Valencia limps in third on 48 million Euros, this is being argued its killing Spanish football.

No Spanish bank will call in their loans on Real Madrid or Barcelona, but….. if the Spanish banks fail, then those loans will be called up.

Bayern Munich no stranger to being bold on their comments “We pay them hundreds of millions to get them out of the shit and then the clubs don’t pay their debts” Attb Uli Hoeness

There are aspects of Plantini’s FFP, which need highlighted:

1) The rules are designed to introduce financial responsibility are clear ” The clubs will comply or they will not play”.
2) Asked that the treat was telling Premier League clubs in particular that financial fair play was coming and they would not play in UEFA competitions unless they agreed….Platini agreed “Yes”
3) Although there will be some flexibility on losses in the early years, Platini was clear that “Sugar Daddy” owners like Sheikh Mansour and Roman Abramovich are welcome but only if they invest money on a permanent basis in return for shares and not by lending it to the club.

Now if we look at ourselves, Mr Abramovich has a holding company “Chelsea Limited” where his money is loaned, that is loaned to Chelsea PLC. The loans from Chelsea Limited to Chelsea PLC were converted into shares, but Mr Abramovich loan to Chelsea Limited was not, it means the loans still exist, but not technically with Chelsea FC and the club is considered debt free, unlike our holding company…… complicated yes it is. We don’t officially pay interest either, unlike Man Utd who do to their owners…. There are owners and owners.

The whole situation allows establishment rich clubs to get their house in order whilst still playing in the competitions, will Platini ban Real Madrid or Barcelona? No of course not, it’s grey enough for UEFA to favor who they want and don’t want. It will be more difficult for new smaller clubs to gain access to the top table.

Fair Play…….. You’re having giraffe of course not!

Posted by Voltaire

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