Now that the season has ended many people will be analysing the Premier League season, who were the winners and who were the losers. Incredibly the most famous club in the country Manchester United finished the season with nothing, whilst Manchester City won the Premier League and Chelsea the F.A Cup and Champions League. Both these clubs had something in common, billionaire owners. Some would argue both have bought success, others would suggest it takes more than this to win a trophy. Either way UEFA are rolling out rules to stop anybody getting in a position to buy success. As of June this year UEFA will introduce ‘Financial Fair Play. The following article covers the detail on how the new rules will work, how teams are getting around it and why it may not be the big teams that suffer.
What is Financial Fair Play
Financial fair play is a rule put in place to make sure that clubs only use a percentage of their earnings to buy players and requires teams to stay out of debt. Clubs will no longer be able to be bank rolled by billionaire chairman unless they can provide evidence that their club can run effectively by using the income from gate receipts, merchandise and the sale of players.
Who will be affected by the changes
Every team in Europe will be affected by the changes, however it is interesting to note that currently of the top 5 teams in the Premier League only Arsenal fall in line with the rules. The way that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has borrowed Chelsea the millions he has spent on the team is far beyond what the rules will allow. Under the new rules each club will have to break even or balance their books.
How would Manchester City be affected?
After their last grasp win Manchester City topped off a brilliant season for them, although it could have been so much different with just one kick. We all know football can be a fickle sport and with Manchester City recording a record 25% year-on-year growth of commercial income their success has obviously attracted more fans and got their fans to spend more on merchandise. As a company that sells football duvet covers Cotton Shack has seen Manchester City outsell Manchester United and also seen Chelsea outsell Liverpool. However, Manchester City would have to continue to be successful and further increase their commercial income to fall within the guidelines. Without the money from winning the Premier League title and F.A Cup and getting to the last 16 of the Champions League next year Manchester City will fail the ‘Financial Fair Play’ test by an estimated £95.5m.
How are Manchester City ‘allegedly’ dodging the rules?
Due to ‘commercial income’ being a major factor Manchester City have struck up a massive £35m deal to sponsor the City of Manchester Stadium. The deal is with a company owned by the chairman of Manchester City Sheikh Mansour. The deal has already prompted an investigation from UEFA to review the deal although they may have already sidestep the rules with the deal. The issue will not go aware for Manchester City with Arsenal already considering their own investigation however with the money to get the best lawyers in the world it could be the big clubs that benefit from the new rules.
Smaller Teams Could Suffer
With less commercial income and assets to sell some of the smaller teams may struggle with the new rules. With many fans watching matches online and the economic climate attendances for some teams are lower than they have been in the past, however the Championship did announce record attendances.
Guest Blog by Mario Burgess – Sports blogger and merchandise buyer for <a href=”http://www.cottonshack.co.uk”>http://www.cottonshack.co.uk</a>