Financial Fair Play rules?

Discussion in 'General Football' started by kursaal, Jul 29, 2017.

  1. talkshowhost86

    talkshowhost86 Mod-Moose Staff

    Messages:
    43,959
    Ratings Received:
    +34,227 / 436 / -102
    *sigh*

    Football really is becoming stupid.

    I think maybe they should set up a European Super League, and then all these fuckers can just sod right off and let the rest of the game continue without these ridiculous fees.

    It's getting to the point where outside of Spurs, I just don't give a shit because it's simply all about money now.

    Bring on the rugby season I say.
     
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Winner Winner x 2
  2. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622
    But in any other form of business an owner is allowed to introduce capital into his own business to help it grow. And if he grows it bigger than a well established competitor that is seen as success. And that is what we are talking about here, not football (that is a completely separate issue) but business.

    The article argues that for some it is economically and geographically almost impossible to compete with some uber clubs that have through various advantageous reasons, had decades to build themselves into hegemonic situations.

    How would smaller clubs finance the enormous cost of a stadium and even if they can, they aren't always geographically located in a position that allows them to build it big enough and fill it and thus generate enough revenue to compete with the ManU's, and even if by some miracle they could, then it would take decades to catch up and ManU would keep growing as well.

    So what would that mean ? That using FFP (old rules, before the slight relaxing) it was almost impossible for any new clubs to come along and threaten the financial domination of the uber clubs who have had decades to build their domination, unchecked by any such rules, they were free to financially dope and bully to preserve and enhance their status.

    It also argued that "Gifted" money, as long as it is legally introduced and doesn't saddle the club with unsustainable debt, is no different from money from fans via a stadium, commercial enterprise and merchandise etc - Why should source of income be deemed more "acceptable" than another. The only reason is that wealthy owners putting money in is the only real threat to the uber club's status.

    The whole point of FFP as originally intended by UEFA was to protect clubs from bad owners, saddling their clubs with debt that could eventually threaten that club's status etc. Introducing standardised good fiscal practices across football.

    The ramping up of the "gifting" rules was not part of the original intention, it was introduced after much negotiation with the ECA Group (G14 previously) of uber clubs after threats of breakaway European leagues etc and it was done to appease them, guaranteeing to preserve their status, ensuring there won't be too many Chelsea's, PSG's, Monaco's and ManC's to threaten their global market domination.

    Billionaire owners "gifting" money does not saddle a club with unsustainable debt. Conversely ManUtd have the biggest net debt of any club in the world. Real and Barca (last time I looked) were not far behind.

    The PL has become the most competitive in Europe, because it has "new" uber clubs massively enhanced by owner capital.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  3. Indacupfortottenham

    Indacupfortottenham Active Member

    Messages:
    846
    Ratings Received:
    +1,231 / 101 / -17
    Just when I thought I couldn't hate uber anymore than I do!
     
    • Funny Funny x 2
  4. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622

    But football has always been a business and "about money". But it's never been just about business or money and it still isn't, it's still about all the other stuff, good management of that money, great coaching, individual talent, collective organisation etc etc. Which is how we came second last year. How Monaco outperformed PSG, how Atletico won La liga a few years ago etc.

    Do you think the standard of football has gone down ? Because I think the standard of football has risen enormously since I started watching in earnest in the late seventies. If we were paying more for an inferior product (as we do in many spheres of life) I'd be grumbling, but at least the product has been getting better and better too.
     
  5. talkshowhost86

    talkshowhost86 Mod-Moose Staff

    Messages:
    43,959
    Ratings Received:
    +34,227 / 436 / -102
    Whilst you're right that there is more to football than money, it is now principally about that.

    I just feel less and less affinity with the game generally.

    I support a rugby team where you see the young players coming through and that's much more entertaining to watch than just buying in success.

    It's why I've been immensely proud of Spurs in the last few seasons because we've brought younger players through and done well as a result. But that's unusual in the game generally and I suspect we'll stop that approach sooner rather than later.

    Ultimately you can be the best coach in the world, but if your opponents can spend 198m on one player, what is the fucking point?

    I think as soon as Spurs sell out to an oiligarch or equivalent, I'll probably largely start to ignore top level football.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. Led's Zeppelin

    Led's Zeppelin Flaccid Member

    Messages:
    2,670
    Ratings Received:
    +5,454 / 61 / -11
    Yes, your points are reasonable, but they don't reflect the way I see football.

    Football, though it is undeniably a business, needs to be very careful about using traditional business models to justify its modus operandi. The distinction between a football club and a shop or manufacturer for example is the fundamental distinction between customers and supporters: customers are free and usually willing to go wherever they get the best deal, and can choose their own parameters, such as price, service, quality, features etc. Football fans, however, are different. They overwhelmingly are stuck with their club. They may make a free choice at the outset, (though many don't feel that they ever had a choice: I certainly didn't!) but having made that choice they're in it for life. They are, in many vitally important respects, the DNA of the club itself, and ultimately more important to it than the owners who, as even DL says, are just custodians. The club's existence depends on supporters and their willingness and ability to finance the club's progress, and though this is increasingly amplified by sponsorship and other external money, the extent of it virtually always is determined by the base level of support.

    So, introducing a truly external element such as a limitless and detached source of funds to a poorly supported club is a distortion of a type that can easily be accommodated in the world of commerce but if it is taken as normal in sport, you have changed the very essence of what distinguishes sport from everything else. You may as well forget the game of football and simply look at some figures in a ledger.

    If you build a big stadium, even if you use outside funding like Spurs and our smelly neighbours have done (not WHU though, they're smelly alright but also crooked and thick), the scale of the whole enterprise is still determined by the number of people who will pay to watch Spurs, and that risk will restrict both the club's and the financiers' ability to get the stadium built in the first place. Buying Neymar with oil money that is effectively written off on day one is a materially different type of transaction.

    It all comes down to what we want football to be: a sport in which success has to be earned, or a business/hobby/slush-fund for a mega-rich philanderer in which money and possibly kicks and clicks are the only parameters that matter.

    A well-run professional sport will find a good balance where there are as few distortions as possible to the principle that success cannot simply be bought, and I think football is in danger of losing sight of what it is, and what success actually consists of.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622
    Ever since football turned professional and started charging people to watch it, it's been both a sport and a business. The fact is, for all this extra money washing about the business, football clubs are still pretty much making the same profits as they were 10/20 years ago. Which is virtually knish.

    The problem starts when fans try to impose their irrational and romantic notions of "fair". Is it fair that a club like Manchester Utd should benefit from having to share a large City with one other major team but London clubs have to share their catchment with many ? Is it fair that teams like Norwich, Southampton, Stoke, Hull, Swansea etc will never have the same access to an immediate large and affluent customer base that others like ManUtd/Liverpool/Spurs etc will have and therefore will always be hamstrung ?

    Is it fair that some clubs play home games in front of 70,000 home fans and others can only have 25,000 ? Surely that creates an unfair advantage, why do we tolerate this ? Why don't limit the size of stadia ?

    Even more unfair, and the thing that really ruins any chance of the playing field ever being truly level is why some clubs are allowed to spend more than others on players and wages. The fairest thing to do would be to cap wages and transfer fees (and the amount of transfers and loans etc) so everyone is equal.

    But that's not going to happen because some teams are way too fond of the massive advantage they have built up over the last couple of decades, by doing that, the CL was set up precisely for them, huge revenues that just circulate and accrue with the same teams, who then keep buying the best players, making sure they continue in the CL and so on and so on. The thing they fear the most is a Chelsea, ManC etc.

    When it comes to football, god bless the mega rich philanderers I say, because without them we'd have been watching ManU (and very occasionally Arsenal) winning the league every year, like Germans do, and Spanish do and Italians do. At least they've levelled the playing field a little, and by ensuring that one team can't hoover up all the best talent in any given league they have also, indirectly helped other marginally doped clubs like ours (owned by another billionaire who made his money nearly bankrupting the UK treasury).

    Unless we are going to be "fair" and limit everyone to the same criteria, then it's only fair we allow everyone a fair crack at the "money" and as long as that money is legal and doesn't saddle a club with unserviceable debt then, why should it be treated differently to any other income - it's all just money after all.
     
  8. Lilbaz

    Lilbaz Just call me Baz

    Messages:
    26,519
    Ratings Received:
    +39,484 / 734 / -238
    The problem with an owner chucking huge amounts of money into a club is that if anything happens to that owner or he just loses interest the club is screwed and will have to have a fire sale.
    Happened in spain to a few clubs malaga was the main one. It happened to monaco to a lesser extent as well.

    The clubs need to be self sustainable or you are risking their very existence.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. 1882andallthat

    1882andallthat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,073
    Ratings Received:
    +871 / 14 / -2
    What, you mean they will watch the situation from afar for a few seasons have a few committee meetings, get someone reasonably senior to come out with a few soundbites in a carefully manufactured statement leading to rumours that something might be done about it, and finally concluding with the square root of diddly squat being done about it.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Led's Zeppelin

    Led's Zeppelin Flaccid Member

    Messages:
    2,670
    Ratings Received:
    +5,454 / 61 / -11
    I can't agree with that at all.

    You seem to be arguing that fairness means being the same, and since clubs are not all the same, a bit of doping to even things up is fine. But I don't believe that fairness means equality, and I don't like doping of any kind.

    Some inequalities in sport have to be accepted, like the fact that Usain Bolt can run faster than me. That's why sport has rules in the first place: to stop less talented people like me jumping in a car to beat Usain Bolt round the track.

    Lionel Messi is not the same as Lee Trundle but it doesn't justify doping up Lee Trundle to make the competition more interesting. And as you say, Manchester, Liverpool and London are not the same as Norwich and Southampton, they can create richer clubs because they are likely to generate more supporters, but that inequality (which is not the same as unfairness in this sporting context) doesn't justify doping anyone. It is a natural consequence of the features of the sport. And it is just another illustration of the fact that sport deliberately highlights inequalities, the strong over the weak, the fast over the slow, it doesn't erase them, and it gives us the chance to see who is the best.

    You are troubled by Arsenal and Manchester Utd dominating the league, as we all were. But what has happened is that two of the most calamitously run clubs in the country at that point, Man City and Chelsea, by virtue of being almost bankrupt as a result of reckless management became easy pickings unlike strongly managed clubs who were not so easily bought, and they were rewarded for their gross incompetence while better run clubs were penalised for being more responsible.

    And FFP has cemented this bizarre unearned advantage over clubs that were trying to do things better and in keeping with their responsibilities to supporters.

    Encouraging or even blandly overlooking the random enrichment of badly run clubs is not in the interest or spirit of the sport, in my opinion.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2017
  11. Japhet

    Japhet Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,465
    Ratings Received:
    +9,239 / 268 / -55

    The other thing with the mega rich clubs is that they are predominantly being funded to massage the massive egos of their monstrously rich owners and to all intents and purposes, the fans are just along for the ride.
     
  12. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622
    What you are arguing is that some financial doping should be accepted but not others. It's a completely flawed argument. Financial doping is somehow more morally acceptable in your opinion if it's fans who are willingly donating their ticket/merchandise/tv subscription as opposed to owners who willingly donate funds ?

    What I am arguing is that "doping" already exists and has existed for a long time, The PL is massively doped - so should they be banned from European competition ? - and within the PL (and lower down as well) there are clubs, in varying degrees (including ourselves) who have used financial "doping" to gain an advantage over other financially disadvantaged teams for decades. So why should we suddenly draw a line in it ? There is no legal or moral high ground here is what I am saying.

    And the real crux of this is that FFP was amended not out of some altruistic moral obligation, it was amended because the cabal of Europe's richest clubs lobbied UEFA until they caved in and introduced legislation to curb the threat to their status. Which I fundamentally have a huge problem with, as it's anti competitive and anti sporting.
     
  13. BehindEnemyLines

    BehindEnemyLines Twisting a Melon with the Rev. Black Grape

    Messages:
    1,336
    Ratings Received:
    +3,081 / 43 / -18
    I'd argue that financial doping is very much the same as jumping in a car to race against Usain bolt! It provides an otherwise improbable advantage that is not self sustainable.
     
  14. Lilbaz

    Lilbaz Just call me Baz

    Messages:
    26,519
    Ratings Received:
    +39,484 / 734 / -238
    There were over 90 clubs that got to vote on ffp under uefa. If it was just brought in in order to keep the richest clubs at the top why did they vote in favour? Did it have nothing to do with the financial disaster the majority of clubs in europe were facing? Has the debt for those clubs not dramatically reduced since the implementation of ffp?

    As for your financial doping a club living within it's means is not financial doping. It is sustainable.
     
  15. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622

    An owner donating funds is just as sustainable as the debt that ManU are carrying.

    It's not hard to understand why the body of FFP was voted on, it's a massive piece of legislation and the vast majority of it makes a load of sense and has helped improve fiscal management of clubs and football in general.

    But an owner putting money into a club in the form of donation or sponsorship (or even interest free loan - effectively to himself) has never been a problem. The problem is clubs being badly run and accruing unsustainable and unmanageable debt. Chelsea and Manchester City have effectively zero debt. Manchester United have 460m of debt which needs servicing and has been leveraged against the club. Imagine the consequences of them hitting a 5 year bad run? Who's in more danger from their fiscal governance Chelsea or ManU ?
     
  16. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622
    Tat's fine, but you either ban all financial doping or none. You can't say it's OK for ManUtd to financially dope their way to title after title but not OK for Chelsea or ManC
     
  17. Lilbaz

    Lilbaz Just call me Baz

    Messages:
    26,519
    Ratings Received:
    +39,484 / 734 / -238
    What happens if the owner dies, or gets arrested or like scholar loses his money on another business venture?
    Chelsea are the most indebted club in the pl with over £1bn debt. Yes abramovich doesn't ask for it to be paid back or for interest but what happens if putin dies and the next russian president decides the oligarchs finances should be siezed? Bye bye chelsea.

    https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/synd...on-in-debt-mean-for-the-clubs-future.amp.html
     
  18. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622

    The situation at Chelsea is still much better than it is at ManU though. The club's debt is effectively owed by Abramovich to Abramovic. The assets of the club match the debt and that debt carries no interest at all which needs huge servicing, unlike ManU's. The scenario about Putin is bogus as most of Abramovic's fortune is not domiciled in Russia, and nor is he.

    For Chelsea to come unstuck it would take something extra ordinary like Abramovic to lose his 10bn fortune on a roulette wheel and turn on his own company and demand it repays him. All it would take for ManU's situation to become perilous is for them to finish outside the top 4 a few seasons running and clubs like ManC and Chelsea to start taking market share from them and their revenues to fall.
     
  19. Lilbaz

    Lilbaz Just call me Baz

    Messages:
    26,519
    Ratings Received:
    +39,484 / 734 / -238
    The situation at man utd can't happen again due to new rules that new owners have to show they have the funds available and are not mortgaging the club. They were brought in with the pl ffp rules.
    Abramovich may not be domiciled in russia but that doesn't stop international courts freezing his assets.
    If man utd revenues start falling they can sell players they are not going to go off a cliff.
    Look at shinawatra at city. He had funds seized and had to make a quick sell, lucky for city that the uae came in. But they might not have and city could easily have gone the way of leeds.
    Look at whats happening in qatar. What happens if there is war and they are invaded? Where does that leave psg? Ffp minimises the damage.

    Clubs that are self sustainable are at far less risk than having to rely on a sugar daddy.
     
  20. Bus-Conductor

    Bus-Conductor SC Supporter

    Messages:
    37,004
    Ratings Received:
    +45,401 / 2,086 / -622
    What if North Korea nuke North America, that's ManU and us fucked.

    Courts freezing assets could happen to the Glazers or Joe Lewis or Ivan Gazedis or Usmanov or the Everton Owners etc etc. Chelsea can sell players and the land they own is far more valuable than the industrial estate Old Trafford sits on. And for what it's worth, I would imagine Abramovic's assets would be well protected from freezing orders.

    I am not arguing against all of FFP. Much of it makes a lot of sense (and the blog piece says so). And I'm not arguing against all forms of fiscal prudence, far from it. But if an owner wishes "gift" a club he owns money (directly or through sponsorship etc), then I do not believe that this should be legislated against. It poses no real risk to the existence of that club, and is no different to that club making revenue in any other way - no revenue in football is guaranteed year on year.
     

Share This Page