Skip to main content

"If you want some accessible but informative insight into football then I suggest you couldn't do better than the Political Economy of Football website, which is not only intelligible but comes with the added bonus of being written by Addicks fan Wyn Grant."
Ben Hayes - Charlton Athletic programme

The Premiership


The Scolari Sacking

Big Phil says goodbye with big cheque The expensive sacking of Luiz Felipe Scolari as Chelsea manager shows just how important the Champions League has become to top Premiership clubs. It is not the iceing on the cake, it's a big slice of the cake in both financial and prestige terms. Chelsea have already made about £40m from the group stage this season and a return to the final would be worth that much again.

Premiership Money Bonanza

Forecasts that the Premiership bubble would burst in the credit crunch increasingly look premature, if not misplaced altogether. The Premier League has secured a record television deal that will be worth almost £1.8 billion over three years. The 5 per cent increase over the last deal will bolster finances of clubs until 2013 when the deal ends. By that time, even on the most pessimistic estimates, the recession should be over.

Liverpool Deal On The Cards

Once again the situation surrounding Liverpool Football Club is confused. Some reports are claiming that talks with a Kuwaiti family who want to buy into the club have broken down over the asking price and how big a stake they would have. However, this could simply be negotiating brinkmanship and does not mean that a deal will not be done. However, one earlier attempt to reach a deal did fail.

Man United Seek Shirt Sponsorship Deal

As expected, the troubled US insurance group AIG which has been bailed out by the US Government will not be renewing its shirt sponsorship deal with Manchester United that expires in May 2010. AIG agreed to pay £14 million a year for four years for the shirt sponsorship deal and also has a longer £5m a year deal to run MU Finance. AIG signed a six-and-a-half year deal at the beginning of 2008 to offer insurance, credit cards and mortgages using the MU Finance brand. It is not clear whether the MU Finance deal will continue.

Carlsberg Hit Out At Liverpool Stadium Delays

Carlsberg, Liverpool's biggest sponsor, has criticised Liverpool's owners, Tom Hicks and George Gillett, for delays in building their new stadium. Keld Strudahl, Carlsberg's international marketing director, said: 'While we have a good relationship with Tom Hicks, we are naturally unhappy that the planned new stadium has been postponed. That cannot be good for Liverpool as a long-term business.' The Danish brewer, whose relationship with Liverpool stretches back 16 years, said it would be happy doing business with Dubai International Capital should it still be interested.

'Business As Usual' at Arsenal

It's 'business as usual' at Arsenal with Arsene Wenger claiming he did not see the upheaval that has rocked the boardroom. Arsenal's shares have held their own on the Plus market in recent months with the few that have come on the market selling for £7,500 each. The club has argued that its financial base is more stable than its top four rivals, although it has been hit by the downturn in the property market. The most closely-watched board member is diamond dealer Danny Fiszman.

Arsenal Up For Grabs Again

The ownership of Arsenal could be up for grabs again after a boardroom row effectively ended the board's lockdown agreement under which directors agreed in 2007 to sell shares to each other. The board ousted long-standing director Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith leaving her free to sell her stake to the club's biggest shareholder, Russian steel magnate Alisher Usmanov. Bracewell-Smith has been marginalised in recent years and didn't get her candidate for chief executive appointed.

Real Madrid Tops Money League

Deloitte's annual Football Money League, which analyses revenues in the 2007-8 season, shows Real Madrid, Manchester United and Barcelona retaining their top three positions. Manchester United saw revenue increase by 21 per cent and only the depreciation of sterling against the euro prevented it from coming top. Overall attendances for the top 20 clubs are slightly up in the first four months of the season compared with the same period last year. Seven of the clubs in the top 20 are English, four are from Italy and the same number are from Germany with two each from Spain and France.

Liverpool Lose Their Sheikh

It looks as if the ruler of Dubai is no longer interested in buying Liverpool who are having difficulty in raising funds for their new stadium. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum has told the club's owners that he has dropped his interest after an unsuccessful two-year pursuit. Intermediary Amanda Staveley, who has been negotiating on Sheikh Mohammed's behalf since the turn of the year, has told Tom Hicks and George Gillett Jr. that he is no longer interested because of the financial climate and their refusal to lower an 'unrealistic' £600m valuation.

Premiership Agrees To Debt Probe

Barclays Premier League officials have signed up to a voluntary investigation into debt levels among their clubs as part of their efforts to head off threats of regulation by Europe. Top clubs have been threatened with explusion from the Champions League as Uefa rails against the overwhelming success of Premiership clubs. Premier League officials are taking a leading role in a new Association of Professional Football Leagues (APFL) formed to represent the senior leagues in all 27 member states of the European Union.