Date: 2nd September 2008 at 1:38pm
Written by:

Yep, we would all love Pompey – or whoever our club is – to be the biggest and the best in the world, and as far as we are concerned, no matter who our club is that is the case to us, but do we not want it to be done in the right way? Although to be honest ‘the right way’ is a thing of the past isn’t it? Isn’t it…

Again, we would all be over the moon if our club was one of the richest clubs in the world and could in effect easily compete with any club at any time, matching, if not bettering what is being offered – but is that really the way you would like to see our club succeed, to basically ‘buy success’… But again, this is probably the only way in this day and age isn’t it!

Chelski are given a hard time, and to be honest no matter what spin you put on it, as big a club as they have been most of the time you cannot tell me that they would have ever come anywhere near to winning the league in the modern era had it not been for Roman Abramovich and his millions? Yep, they would have continued to win cups, would have been in the top half a dozen sides in the land and been a force to be reckoned with but you cannot tell me they would have won back to back titles without spending the hundreds of millions of pounds that they did – and on occasions wasted!

Granted, just because you ‘buy the best’ it will not always mean you will ‘be the best’, as you have to mould these globetrotters into a team, which to be fair Jose Mourinho did at Stamford Bridge, but it gives you a bloody good chance if you can look up one day and say ‘right I want him so he is coming to Chelski!’

Mr Abramovich and Chelski now appear to have themselves a rival, as Citeh have been taken over by the ‘Abu Dhabi United Group’, or ADUG, and these guys are ‘said’ to be worth 10 times what Abramovich is, so in terms of ‘I want him so I will go and get him’ Chelski have a rival, and Citeh showed this last night with the incredible signing of Robinho from Madrid for a whopping £32.5m. So in terms of what money they can offer for players, and the ludicrous wages they can offer then Citeh in theory should trump Chelski every time now…

Some people have said ‘Citeh, and all the new found millions is good for football.’ Bollocks is it, how can this be good for football?

The poor will become poorer, Chelski and Citeh will enter into massive bidding wars with each other, which will in turn see every other club – and of course players, then most importantly us, the fans who seem to be the ones who are cared about the least these day! – suffer, as these teams will see what Citeh are paying and start thinking ‘I will have some of that’, and the more it costs to bring in players, or the more wages needed the more ‘we’ have to pay for the privilege of watching the teams we love, always have and always will, and some of those that come into the game with their ‘play things’ then swan off without a care in the world!

Most clubs will be left thinking ‘if Citeh will pay X amount for so and so, then every other bugger can pay an extra X amount for so and so’ likewise – which will mean only the ‘bigger boys’ will ever be able to compete in the transfer market even more, and those looking to play catch-up will be left further behind, or feel under more pressure to ‘take a risk’ and look to splash the cash in the hope of being able to break-up football’s monopoly! Some will take such risks that they risk it all, and at a cost – step forward Leeds United… But then again, this all comes down to personal restraint; if you do not have it you should not spend it! But then again, if you have you will – but where do you draw the line?

Lets look beyond the premier league as well though, as believe it or not there is a world outside of this – the richer the rich become the poorer the poor become as a result, and whilst even the poorest in the premier league still bring in massive amounts those outside, although to be fair even at the lowest level of football still earn ‘a decent wage’ it is nowhere near to the ‘superstars’ in the ‘big league’ and this gap grows wider and wider.

This new found wealth that Citeh have stumbled across is going to have grave consequences on the football world as they are going to look to literally go out and buy who they want, when they want – and if they want one of our players, or someone else’s – they sure as hell will get them as the money will be ‘too good to refuse’, assuming the player in question wants to go, which is not always something they want. But from our past experience if we are offered whopping money for a player we will make them go! But lets work on the principle that if a player does not want to go you cannot make them, most will though as money ‘often talks’ and some will be convinced by this, whilst other players will not take long to decide to ‘take the money and run’. The selling club might then have £15m, £20m or even £30m to spend but then you try and spend it and see just how much the next selling club will be holding out to get, knowing full well you have money burning a hole in the pocket, which to be honest is fair enough – that is how business works.

Citeh fans will be loving things at the moment, maybe I am a little envious of them in a way, but whilst I would never say ‘I never want this to happen with Pompey’ as you never know what is round the corner, morally I would not want this. People say ‘we bought ourselves out of the relegation mire’ a few years back, true we spent a few million quid, but this was on several players, something like £12m on 4 or 5 players if memory serves, so maybe £2m-£3m per player, which isn’t a lot in the day and age we live in, and these were sensible purchases not over the top panic buys…

Anyway, I digress, back to the ‘Citeh fans loving it at the moment thought’, yep they will be ‘we’ve got Robinho’ was being chanted by gleeful Citeh fans just before, and more so just after midnight outside Eastlands, but is this buying really going to bring major success, and will it last forever?

My own thinking is no! These fellas ‘investing’ are in it for the glory, they want to buy success and if this success does not come off they will go through manager after manager as they try to find this – yet I still fear for them that this will not come off, and then you would have to fear for the club, what happens then? Assets are sold off, the club is left in a mess and what happens after that? Will these fans still be singing in the streets of Manchester then? Whilst the true die-hard Citeh fans will remain, you watch the sudden – which is now inevitable – influx of ‘new found’ Citeh fans disappear as the club could slip away?

Ok, maybe things will work out for them and they will become the ‘super power’ they want to be but the major difference with Citeh and the likes of Arsenal, Chelski, Liverpool and Manyoo in this country, and the likes of Milan, Madrid, Barcelona and so on abroad is these are massive, massive clubs with huge reputations and names throughout the world, with this having almost always been the case, these are names that will always be able to sustain the interest in them in every corner of the globe, so if Abramovich for example becomes bored with Chelski, then if he went there would be someone else that would step in to sustain things as they are ‘a global brand’, Citeh, as big a club as they are, will not be able to sustain this global appeal. Yep, they can keep bidding for players, they can even keep buying them and paying them massive wages – like they have Robinho, but my thinking is players of his type will not look to stick around long term, as they want to be the best in the world, playing in the champions league year in year out for the best teams in the world and Citeh, as much as they will spend, or look to spend and will offer players will not be able to offer this. They will end up with a team of ‘mercenaries’, looking for the massive pay cheque!

Again, as I say as big a club as Citeh are, with a rich history and all that they just do not have the ‘global appeal’ in my thinking to sustain the kind of interest that is hoped they can, and will not be able to enjoy the success that the money they will spend will demand – even though in theory this ‘should’ buy success, and I can see it all ending in tears so I do hope some of the Citeh fans are being sceptical, maybe I am too much? But surely they must be airing on the side of caution?

‘If’ this venture is to be ‘successful’ from a Citeh point of view, as much as it will be trouble for the rest they would need instant success that the money ploughed in would be expecting, Champions League football would not be enough, they would need to win the league if not this season then in the next as they just do not, and will not have the global recognition that the other ‘super clubs’ do, and have had for decades, otherwise. You cannot get this recognition over night, which is what Citeh would need for this move to be a success for them and not fail – as much as Chelski bought success, they always have been fairly well known universally, which although Citeh are not tin pot they are not in that league of recognition. So even if Citeh try to buy this success I do not remain convinced this can happen for them – hence I fear for their future, as much as everyone else’s…

In the short term – at least – for the majority of clubs in this country this is a very bad thing and cannot, and will not ever be ‘the good things for football’ some brain-dead cretins would have you believe it is…


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