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Ben Hayes - Charlton Athletic programme

Football Finance

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Arsene gets his man

Chelsea and Manchester City got their transfers sorted out well before deadline day while Manchester United continued to splash the cash but were also able to offload players to offset their expenditure.  In terms of gross expenditure, it is their biggest transfer window spend ever.

As always, Arsenal were cautious.   At Sunday's draw against Leicester, Arsenal fans had chanted 'Buy an [expletive deleted] striker.'    Well, Arsene Wenger managed to secure Danny Welbeck's services against competition from Tottenham Hotspur.

Bulls get another reprieve

The long drawn out saga of Hereford United has seen the club given another seven days by the High Court to sort out its financial affairs and pay its debts.  

The club says that new investment is coming in, but the question is whether it is happening quickly enough given that Revenue and Customs want the £170,000 they are owed.   The former management team is also owed money.  It is evident that the patience of the court is wearing thin.

United's dilemma

On Saturday I published a comparison between Manchester United and Tesco.  Hey presto!  What appears in the Financial Times today?   A comparison between the Red Devils and Tesco.

I can't decide whether it's a case of imitation being the sincerest form of flattery or great minds think alike, in this case the Pink Un's Sporting Life columnist Matthew Engel.   The content is actually rather different from my article: it's a well written but somewhat humourous piece.  

Why United are not Tesco

Market dominant firms often find themselves knocked off their perch if they become complacent, their offer becomes tired and they are challenged by new entrants.   Yesterday Tesco issued another profit warning and slashed their dividend as they struggled to maintain their market share.

There might seem to be an analogy with Manchester United.   Certainly for lazy journalists writing off United is an easy way to generate some copy.   However, there are some significant differences between the retail and football giants.

Fashion for flotation is over

At one time it seemed as if almost every club was keen to float and sell shares, even glamorous ones.  It was seen as a way of raising money, a mark of prestige and, in some cases, a way of involving fans.  In all about 50 clubs have floated since the 1990s when television income started to pick up.

El Tel kicks off football fund

Terry Venables is a larger than life character from the school of hard knocks typical of an earlier generation of managers perhaps best represented today by Harry Redknapp or new Palace manager Neil Warnock.

'My league's bigger than yours'

Professor Simon Chadwick takes a look at the thorny issue of which is the biggest league in European football.   Although the conclusions are not surprising, the evidence and its appraisal are interesting.

Top Premier League transfers

An interesting infographic has been produced on top Premier League transfers, both in and out of the top flight.

The folks behind this say, 'We're highlighting 6 of the biggest transfers into the Premier League and the 6 biggest out of the league.  The players highlighted in the graphic are the players we believe were the biggest moves, but obviously that is just an opinion that's open to discussion.'

Bashing the Premier League

It's fashionable to bash the Premier League.  It may be a commercial success, it may bring world class players to England and it may have a global profile, but this only encourages its opponents to cut down the tall poppy.

The charges are well known, and they are not all without some justification, but are often exaggerated. It is claimed that it has undermined the national team; it has killed off lower level teams and grass roots football; and the players are all overpaid. 

Being careful with your money

Turf Moor is one of the most atmospheric old style grounds in football.  I have sat in the away end, but also in the home stand for a game against Hull.   Tonight it is the money men of Chelsea who are the visitors.