Thursday, June 18, 2009

Football and Finance

Went to the Deloitte Football Business dinner last night. What a good do. The report on the finances of football is a peerless piece of research, Dan Jones always presents it very well and the guest list is top draw; good lads from around town who like football, mainly.

Had a good chat to Martin Goodman, the FD at Blackburn Rovers. It's clear from the financial position of Rovers in the Premier League that any activity in the transfer market will depend on the sale of Crocque Santa Cruz. That referee who sent Jason Roberts off against West Brom probably cost the club £1.5m. Matt Derbyshire looks like he's Greece bound. The new South African is quick and there have been enquiries for Keith Andrews from Premier League clubs. Amazing.

The continual difficulty is that Rovers have very little capital headroom. Any new investment would really help. This rather neatly follows on from the dialogue I've been having on here. But I still maintain that the Walker Trust is preferable to many flaky alternatives.

Other people at our table were Dan Jones, Graham Wallace of Man City, Ashley Lewis who used to be on the board at City and who now works for Steve Morgan owner of Wolves, Marple lad Phil Pinder, and Bill Dawson from Deloitte. Much banter on the fixture list followed.

On table 3, Brendan Flood from Burnley didn't show. But he has a lot on his mind.

Another feature of the night is the trivia question Dan Jones comes up with to keep me on my toes. His was: Name all 23 foreign managers in the Premier League.

Mine was can you name the five players who have played for at least four different European Cup or Champions League winning teams but have never won it themselves?


Vinjay said...

We saw by what could have happened last season that lack of investment will ultimately end none too well. That combined with a bad manager (I don't think the current manager is bad though not really what I want for the club) is disastrous. What would Jack want more in the current situation? Self sufficiency or ambition? I'm sure he would have opted for the latter and used his resources to the full extent.

I still think Jack would look for a takeover himself in the current situation though. More investment would increase stability and he would have offered that but only the best was good enough for him. Even he couldn't offer that now with the Walker resources. He would have looked for the best owner possible.

I believe the owners ultimately forced through the sacking of Ince. I suppose that's one good thing they have done. If only to protect their sale chances which makes sense since I'm fully in favor of a takeover. I know not all takeovers work out but I need some hope. The possibility of a successful takeover is at least something positive to imagine.

Did Goodman say anything regarding takeovers at all? Any interest?

Michael Taylor said...

Vinjay, you make your point well. And for the club to punch above our weight needs seriosu outside help. Who would give that, and why? It won't be emotional - there aren't any people left in Lancashire with enough moeny to splurge on Rovers. And for those that do have that kind of money Rovers are way down a list of preferred targets.

We all loved the local hero ride. But the only body with serious wealth and a love of Rovers are the Walkers.

As it stands at the moment, they want out. But that could change. Families, eh? It will be harder to change if they've sold their interest entirely.

Other local heroes? I know Rovers fans of similar wealth as Brendan Flood who has bought Burnley. We discussed forming a consortium but it's a huge cheque to write.

Brendan illustrates the problem. He's in the shit right now. Burnley have NO MONEY beyond the Sky windfall and ticket sales. And Modus being in administration leaves the ground development in tatters.

And no, there's nothing doing on the takeover front at the moment. Buyers are emerging, but nothing at Rovers.

Keep The Faith


Vinjay said...

I don't believe they love the club at all. They don't appear to have any interest whatsoever beyond a sale.

This consortium wasn't related to a rumour about 3 groups taking up 30% each was it? Someone on BRFCS brought it up and Alan Nixon looked into it but said they weren't really being considered serious bidders.

The last thing I want is for the fans to own the club. In my opinion Rovers fans don't even come close to sharing or even acknowledging the "think big" mentality Jack Walker emphasised. There's too much of a parochial mentality and if the fans owned the club I could only see it going downhill fast.

When you expressed this interest did you gain any insight into the terms and conditions of a sale?

I don't really see any use in comparing to a club that isn't established and might be relegated after 1 season. Personally I only dislike Man United (since that's who the majority of fans disliked when I began supporting this club 12 years ago and I don't see any reason to stop disliking them) and rivalry with other clubs might make sense being in the same league it dosen't make them equals.

Fans should be looking at a top half finish rather than finishing above them which would hardly be a massive achievement. It seems like the only goal amongst some fans for next season is beating them but there's far bigger things to think about.

Michael Taylor said...

There is every use in comparing Rovers with Burnley - same kind of catchment area, same chance of having a rich supporter, same supporter demographic and the same proximity to the NW giants.

I can't go into who what and when.