Beppe Marotta Juventus

In defence and support of Beppe Marotta and Andrea Agnelli

By tdf, July 27, 2014

We most probably could afford to compete with (at a large risk) some of the wages offered by the richer clubs at the definite expense of missing out on other purchases BUT our budget is aimed at breaking even in the future, of self financing (which seems a perfectly reasonable aim, as a business, as a club)…we do not have anywhere near the financial backing of the richer clubs, and in several cases, nor do we have the income. I have seen the example of Sanchez bandied about as one which we could easily have afforded…

Arsenal paid somewhere between EU38-44m for his transfer, and gave him a wage of approximately EU10m per season. 
Last season our top earners were Buffon on EU6m and Tevez on EU5.5m. (are these figures after tax?)

Were we to have matched the Arsenal offer, a huge chunk of our transfer kitty would have vanished in an instant, our wage budget would need to be hugely expanded and club legend Buffon, top scorer last season Tevez and others such as Vidal and Pogba would be asking why they are earning in some cases half of what Sanchez was given, when their input to the team is/will be arguably similar, and they have all invested themselves in our recent success.

From a business perspective this (matching Arsenal’s Sanchez deal) is a wretched move, and it brings us onto the idea of morale, emotion, ego and passion….intangibles which very clearly separate football, on the whole, from other industries. Players moving solely for financial gain is understandable and has always been part of the game. What some people appear to have missed is that we are no longer the financial force we once were. The best players generally end up at the highest paying teams which win the most trophies. Some players still hold desire of following in the footsteps of their heroes…thankfully many have played at Juve! Platini, Zidane, Baggio etctetctc. Still, on the financial front, we are some way off the top table.

beppe marotta juventus

beppe delboy marotta

Sanchez is not a sure-fire way to elevate us hugely in Europe, which is where we struggled last season. Would the huge outlay, at the expense of purchasing potential and proven talent (on their way up from relative obscurity) in other areas of the squad, be definitely worth it from a business perspective? I think not. It would surely give us a better chance. But for how long? And what of the rest of the squad? Sanchez does not guarantee a return or profit on the money it would take to have taken him.

We are in the business of taking small, calculated risks, investing in quality youth (I think every one of our youth teams made the league finals last season), continuing our domestic dominance, qualifying every year for the champions league and hoping to reach that richly rewarding last 8 stage year in, year out. These goals seems attainable without over-extending ourselves financially in a desperate race to compete with clubs with vastly greater resources. We have no burning need to take that route, despite whatever business studies you may have consumed…Slow and steady is our way and I for one am content with this plan.

I have no need to start researching balance sheets to understand that arsenal are in a far healthier position financially than ourselves. They make more money and have considerably lower debt. Which goes a fair way to explaining why they can offer higher wages and transfer fees than Juve.

The company who own Juventus, Exor, is indeed one of the largest in the world, in terms of its assets, with a solid annual turnover. However, Juve is just one of many companies which they majority own or own in a sizable fashion. It is different to their other investments in that it is a football club…and has a very rich and lengthy association with the Agnelli family and Italian football and culture ( Exor CEO John Elkann is the grandson of Gianni Agnelli…Andrea is the nephew of Gianni Agnelli, son of Umberto Agnelli). What I take from my research into Exor is that they are in the business of making money (this in itself means that the owners approach the business of Juventus FC markedly differently than how Abramovich or Mansour Bin Zayed or similar billionaire playboys approach running a football club). And they do a damn good job of it. Football is a harder industry to crack in terms of making huge revenue. First must come consistent success at the highest level. The difference between the owners of Chelsea, PSG, M City, Monaco and the owners of Juventus should be very clear to anyone debating the issue of our financial standing in the game. Also, the difference in revenue possibilities between italian and english clubs. Only the germans do I see as far advanced and also a solid model to follow, yet their ownership system is amazingly different to all the other top leagues in Europe. Still, they are run in a amazingly efficient manner. With most bundesliga clubs making a profit, the league as a whole surely managing this, and compare that with the premiership?

That highest level in Italy we have achieved and hope to continue. However, due to factors well and truly beyond our control, the highest level in Italy is nowhere near as profitable a position to hold as the highest level in England, and probably Spain and perhaps Germany also??

Ideally we will be in the last 8 of the champions league most years in the near future. We did it well enough in 2012/13, but failed miserably last term. I see Man City, Barcelona, R Madrid, Chelsea, B Munich, PSG, Man City, Arsenal and Man U as above us in terms of squad, management and financial muscle. Which sees us more likely to be in need of spending wisely, improving tactically and fighting damn hard in order to break into that group. Dortmund, Atletico, Roma, Napoli, Liverpool and possibly Monaco are all itching to also break into that top group of elite clubs.

Money does not instantly buy success. Look how long it has taken Man City to reach and remain near the top of the premiership and they have yet to prove consistently powerful in Europe…And for a sparkling contrast, see Diego Simeone at Atletico last season.

Andrea said last September that the definite plan is to be ‘self financing’ by the end of next season.

‘In this way we reach self-financing, without sporting risk and with financial power. Then we must know how to spend. It’s not said that a product that isn’t expensive isn’t good. It’s right to optimize the investments. After that, we work on building an economical structure that allows us in the short-medium term to be able to make a big purchase only participating to the UCL. Summarizing, we can now suppose some high-level operation, but they must be worthy. We can’t spend just to spend.’

There is also the rather large matter of calciopoli to consider. We were skanked. Most of those who have plumbed the depths of revelations since those dark days are well aware of how badly we were skanked and by whom. There is a cost to our reputation which will take longer to clear. As with the American government who tell lies after lies after lies, almost invariably with zero evidence to proof their accusations e.g. Osama Bin laden took down the twin towers. Saddam has WMD. Assad used chemical weapons on his own people. Russia invaded and annexed Crimea. Russia are responsible for downing MH17…all of which are completely fabricated grand pieces of propaganda deployed as part of their long term goals as a Corporation, not government. Nothing more, nothing less. Now…how many people do you know who simply take all of those above examples as FACT? Not because they have seen any proof whatsoever to confirm the charges, but simply because the US government said ‘we know’? I still smirk, in a goblin cynical way, when I recall the taliban asking Bush for proof that Bin Laden was responsible for the 9/11 attack. Twice. Bush and his minders, the same minders in charge of HypeMan for Death Inc, Obama, had no proof, so rejected the taliban offer of handing over Bin Laden. It seemed better to have no proof, invade afghanistan, and keep repeating OSAMA DIDIT. I use the US government as an example for they are absolute grandmasters of deceit and propaganda, and the aims of the corporate interests in charge of the US government, for whom Obama and Power and Nuland and the rest of those pigfucking ghouls are merely mouthpieces, are met by mass deceit. Who cares if 10000 people march on the streets of new york against the $3bn US taxpayers give to Israel every year for them to continue the genocide in Palestine, when the rest of the US population seemingly cares little or more likely believes in the mass propaganda constantly churning out mass deceit. Majority Rule…as my favourite poet Sage Francis outlined so perfectly many moons ago.

Indeed, we are victims of a far less deadly, but similar smear campaign…for I come across hundreds of supporters who truly believe that we were caught red-handed fixing matches. I would suspect there are millions of a similar mind-set. The truth becomes inconsequential if enough people believe your lies…In our case, enough mud was thrown to definitely stick. Our reputation and prestige have suffered. It actually hurts me when I encounter other fans on or off the screen and they sneer at the demotion, the stripping of two legitimately won titles and then seem to suddenly recall another affair involving Conte…My blood boils, my teeth start to show themselves in a snarl like a dog ready to attack and I sense a hint of shame, massive indignation, regret and pure rage at the unjust nature of what happened. People say that in the land of the blind the one eyed man is King, yet I am of the opinion that the one eyed man is lonely, too detached from the shared reality of everyone else around him…

Make no mistake, calciopoli and scomessopoli have harmed our reputation and for a horridly large portion of worldwide fans and players, we were rightfully convicted of match fixing. Indeed, not just the fans but the players. And in this climate of battling against vastly superior financial muscle at other clubs, our prestige and reputation is of more importance than ever before. We wish to sell our club as a historical pillar of european football at the highest level…

On top of the somewhat soiled nature of our modern history there is the financial cost of calciopoli to consider. Agnelli continues to aim for EU400m compensation for the losses incurred due to the calciopoli sentencing. That seems a very conservative number.

Just think what we could have done with that money…

Well, I seem to have found myself tangled in various thought loops, probably due to the heat here in San Vito Lo Capo and the exhaustion after a fitful slumber last night which took in three different rooms and four different beds, only to find – finally- a pleasant dreamscape moments before my savage queen awoke to ask me if I needed a cup of tea…

I guess the points I had intended to cover were of my complete disagreement with those who suggest we can easily compete for the signatures of established world class players with the hugely richer clubs. And I completely agree with what Agnelli said in the quote above.

We have won three league titles on the trot. Our squad is the best it has been since 2006. We have surely one of the finest midfield youngsters and one of the most magnificent elder statesmen in the world game, with Vidal, if he stays as I assume he probably will can also be considered, when fit, another world class option.

Our attack is fine and finally been renovated in a serious manner. Pereyra is interesting, Morata could be explosive, Romulo offers in the very least a probable upgrade on Isla. Coman could be a welcome surprise. Evra brings experience and left back natural talent. Our future looks promising in the form of Berardi, Gabbiadini, Leali, Rugani and deeper down the youth ranks.

Our new stadium is brilliant. The toast of Italy and a role model for others to follow along the path to club owned home grounds.

So many reasons to be cheerful.

 forza juve…

Share with the world...