I do love the Barcelona strategy this summer.
‘BARCELONA INTERESTED IN HECTOR BELLERIN’
Small Print: ‘ᵇᵃʳᶜᵉˡᵒⁿᵃ ʰᵃˢ ⁿᵒ ᵐᵒⁿᵉʸ’
Still, they do have a delightful pink and green kit this season. The chances of them coming up with a fee for our right back seems very, very slim.
Transfer gossip language has been very interesting this summer. Everyone, including some journalists, has decided they want to be a transfer expert when they grow up. We’ve moved from ITK accounts hedging bets on Wayne Rooney joining, to accounts dropping things like.
‘Arsenal bid hasn’t happened, but is imminent’
What sort of information is that? Imminent? Come at me when the fax has landed.
So, in today’s news, Arsenal are about to imminently lodge a bid for Houssem Aouar. That’s the nearly news GFFN and one of the French stations has. I don’t think this story has moved much, but it’s pretty clear that the plan is to first, land the Algerian (thought he was Moroccan the other day, sorry), then we’ll move on Thomas Partey.
I think there’s a couple of things at play holding up these deals. Firstly, we’re not doing particularly well at shifting on players. It looks like everyone in Europe is waiting for a better deal before they sell and start their own transfer business. Matteo, Torreira, Lacazette, Reiss, Sokratis, and Mustafi are all still with Arsenal. I don’t think that’s a lack of interest, I think it’s a lack of commitment because of the uncertainty.
Once those names start moving, which I believe they will, I think we’ll see posturing clubs come to the table. Lyon will not land £60m for their young star and they might entertain a swap deal. They have no Europe, they need to sell, so bringing players the other way will be of interest.
Atléti might be stubborn enough to hold out for the full whack of cash, but remember, they are in dire straits when it comes to cash. They can only invest 25% of what they make. Even the best possible summer is not going to give them much room to make blow out deals. I think they might also indulge in swaps if anyone will go the other day, and I think they might move away from full cash payment.
I also wonder if there’s posturing with our players. Letting Mikhi go on a free was the right thing to do. However, that might have opened the door to other players to push for the same. Mustafi has one year left on his deal, why wouldn’t he push for a Bosman? Why wouldn’t Kola push for an extra £10k a week in Germany if he can shake out of his deal? There’s never been a better year to try your luck.
Spurs have gone full-on Jose Mourinho over at the (what is their stadium’s name?) bowl. They’re close to bringing Gareth Bale back home on a years-long loan. They’ll pick up £300k a week of his mega-contract. He’s a great player. Spectacular. A winner. A machine. However, you cannot ignore that he only played 1200 minutes last season, might lack motivation, and he has one of the worst injury records in world football. I think he’s racked up about 30 injuries at Madrid. Truly shocking. I love having the best players back in England, but can’t help but think this is going to look like Ozil levels of ROI.
In an interesting bit of merch news, it is being reported that Arsenal has the most purchased shirt in the UK. The analysis seems a little blurry, they’ve based some of it on search data on a single website (massive SEO link-building play). It reads more like a very bias poll than reality, but look, I’ll take a win however it comes. The new Arsenal shirts are certainly more pleasing on the eye that the Liverpool offering.
The Premier League has made a new deal in China with Tencent, the tech giant has a finger in a lot of gaming pies around the world. It also owns WeChat, a more advanced version of Whatsapp. This from the FT.
The replacement deal with Tencent, which was approved unanimously by the league’s 20 member clubs, runs until the end of the season and includes a fee, as well as a revenue-sharing agreement with the Premier League based on subscriber numbers. But it is worth less than the amount PPTV was due to pay this season, according to people with direct knowledge of the terms. Clubs have been reassured by Premier League chief executive Richard Masters that they will not be out of pocket from the new arrangements, partly because PPTV had already paid for half of its $700m contract, the people said.
So, firstly, good news that the Premier League has recouped a huge pool of money from a massive market. Secondly, I think it’s very interesting that it’s an org that is heavily into tech picking up the deal. I’d be interested to see if they have anything interesting lined up for distribution of the game. WeChat is your pocket everything, I wonder if you’ll be able to buy games via the app?
The future of the Premier League football, from where I’m looking, is not SKY. They do not have pockets deep enough and I think it is extremely ominous for them that Amazon is lurking noisily in the background.
- Amazon is helping Spurs build their brand with All or Nothing
- They are creating a merchandise hub on their site, no doubt that’ll be huge in the future
- They already have a small piece of the pie where they offer a slew of games via Amazon Prime
- Sport, in general, is one of the few appointment TV moments. It’s globally popular. It makes so much sense for them if they want more engagement with their app.
My hope is that at some point, someone will come in with the scale to take all the spoils. Not many with pipes or capital to do it, but Amazon certainly does. My football mix of apps and subscriptions in America is almost as absurd as it is in the UK. Hopefully, that’ll work itself out at some point, but again, notable that so many major brands are using football to pump their cord-cutting download numbers. Expect more competition when the current deal runs out. Disney+, Facebook, and Google might make a play.
Ok, that’s me done today, see you in the comments.