The future of football is definitely exciting for some but definitely daunting for others. In modern day football, money does all the talking and it seems to be the only step forward if you want instant success.
Unless your one of the elite teams such as Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester United or Bayern Munich it is very hard for other teams to break into the elite unless you have a billionaire to back you.
Tradition is not enough to hack it now days, what counts the most is chequebooks. You take Everton and Newcastle for example, strong and passionate clubs with a rich tradition, yet they found themselves struggling over the past years due to the clubs finances and not being able to invest heavily in new players. They do not have the money to compete with the likes of the top 5 clubs in the premier league. Having a good scouting team or a brilliant manager and coaching team just doesn’t cut it anymore.
When Roman Abramovich exploded onto the scene he changed the football world, whether it was a good or a bad thing that is another debate? Chelsea to be honest were a good team before the arrival of the Russian billionaire but still miles away from Arsenal and United. Once Abramovich splashed out his millions, Chelsea meant business and within two seasons Chelsea set the world alight and bookmarked their place as one of the elite teams of modern day football.
Flash forward to 2011 and what was once a new and exciting prospect, has now just become a common trend. Once the Arab Sheiks probably got bored of their billions of money they decided to take an interest into football. Instead of watching it on TV, why not invest in running a football club instead? When the Abu Dhabi United Group bought Manchester City in 2008, the rest of the premiership and world must have thought here we go again. City were always a mid- table team, never putting their stamp on the Premiership, but like Everton, a club with a huge fan base and rich tradition.
However one thing for sure with the money that has been invested into the club, no longer will they think about being a struggling mid-table team, now all they can think about is how long will it take them to win the Premiership and soon Champions League and become one of the heavyweights of modern day football. With the likes of Aguero, Nasri, Dzeko, Silva, Yaya Toure playing for them shouldn’t take too long.
Man City were not the only team to get the backing by Arab owners. Sheikh Abdullah Al Thani bought the club last year but it was only this year they started to invest heavily, around 568million Euros. The club finished 11th that year and with the new signings they have acquired this summer (Van Nistelrooy, Cazorla, Joaquin, Toulalan, Mathijsen as well as the additions of Julio Baptista and Demichellis), Malaga look like serious contenders to state a place in next years Champions League.
I think it would be a bit too farfetched to say they can challenge Real Madrid and Barcelona for the La Liga title this season despite being on the same points as Real Madrid and 1 point behind leaders Barcelona. Remember this was a team, around the same time last year were fighting for survival, and now they find themselves in a Champions league spot and 1 point behind Barcelona. Who says money doesn’t buy you success. I think it is fair to say a top four finish this year and a few more signings in the years to come, who knows what impact they can have on a league that has been dominated by Real Madrid and Barcelona.
If you thought Man City and Malaga sent out big waves of intent, then look again. Paris St Germain looked like a Tsunami compared to those two. After being bought by Qatar Investment Authority, The Parisians intentions were simple, to once again regain the title and be a power force as they once were back in the glory days. After finishing 4th last season PSG invested £75 million on players such as Diego Lugano, Salvatore Sirigu, Momo Sissoko, Jeremy Ménez, Blaise Matuidi, Kevin Gameiro and their most prized asset Javier Pastore.
After a home loss in their first match they have suddenly picked up momentum and currently find themselves in 1st place in Ligue 1. What we do know is that the £75 million investment this summer has put huge pressure and expectations on the Parisian club, and nothing other than a league title would be regarded as a definite failure.
Whatever happens between these three clubs, we know that money has definitely changed these clubs for the better. Where does this leave the rest of the clubs who do not have the financial backing, is another question but certainly for the clubs that have been invested, great expectations and pressure lies on the manager, the staff and the players?
The owners want instant success, and nothing less will do. It will be very interesting to see what type of impact these clubs have and what they will bring to the table, after all they are holding the key to what is happening to the modern game.