Newcastle United are positioned to become the next football club to be taken over by a rich perspective owner. While money is crucial to allowing teams to exist, these new owners are buying their way to the top of the table. Most of us love a good underdog story. However, taking a lower-tier club and injecting money into it is the opposite of an underdog. The following are examples of how these billionaire owners are destroying the beautiful game.
Becoming a European football power should be earned rather than bought. Many of the new owners in football, like Sheikh Mansour, are emptying their pockets in hope of European glory.
Sir Alex Ferguson described this issue in his book when he said, “I am not sure that it has bought [Man City ] more than a squad…While you might be able to buy your way to short-term success, it does not work over the long term” (Leading 62). Per usual, Sir Alex hits the nail right on the head. Money can buy talent, but not culture.
Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester City, and RB Leipzig have all failed to lift the Champions League trophy since their takeovers. Yet, all are taking strides to elevate themselves into the most elite tier of football. Actions like focusing on their youth programs and investing in the future have been advancing them off the pitch. These clubs all want to prove that they are here to stay and more than a few big-money signings. However, in the rise of these new mega-rich clubs, football will begin to suffer.
Monopoly of Football
The hierarchy of football has been set by how much a club has achieved in the past. Now, that hierarchy has the possibility to flip into rewarding the owner with the money to spend. Money is a crucial part of the game, but never before has wealth controlled the game. Financial Fair Play rules help to slow clubs from pumping cash into their finances, but still, clubs can grow at rapid rates.
The question remains: Is this okay? In short, the answer is no. In a future where only the wealthiest owners lead the teams to glory will destroy the competitiveness in European Football. For teams like Leicester City, there wouldn’t be much to play for because even when they succeed, the reward wouldn’t be high enough for them to challenge the richer clubs year after year. In the past, clubs grew by winning. The biggest clubs in the world became that way because of their playing on the pitch. This system also allowed smaller sides the chance to become massive, if they earned it. Now, clubs like RB Leipzig are finding themselves near the top, not because they earned it, but because their owner bought it. The game will not belong to the most competitive teams, but those who can afford to beat them out.
Any side that can get promoted multiple years in a row is remarkable. However, rich owners have led to unnatural growth in some clubs. Newcastle may just become the next example of that. Mohammed Bin Salman is looking to take over the club. Salman looks to have endlessly deep pockets, which will cause issues among Premier League clubs. Multiple clubs have raised concerns about the takeover, because of Salman’s alleged connections to breaking human rights laws. The future is a mystery, but this takeover could lead to more to come.
Thanks for reading. Glory Glory Man United.
Written by CJ Szaz