The Month in Soccer Business: February 2012

A monthly compilation of interesting business news related to soccer. February 2012.

UEFA considers Champions League ban on players owned by third parties – February 1st

Uefa has confirmed it will consider banning from the Champions League players whose transfer rights are owned by third parties.

Gianni Infantino, the general secretary of European football’s governing body, said the practice – which is already outlawed in the Premier League and France’s Ligue 1 – could not be allowed to continue.

“This kind of player ownership is a growing threat. We will ourselves look into this matter because it cannot continue in this manner.”

Full Article >> The Guardian


Everton FC fans planning to buy Finch Farm training ground – February 8th

An Everton fans’s group is stepping up plans to buy the club’s Finch Farm training ground.

The Blues’ future at state-of-the-art complex in Halewood has been placed in doubt since Hudson Capital Properties announced last October its intension to sell the 55-acre site.

Since the declaration, Trust Everton has taken steps towards purchasing the site to ensure that the club’s status as tenants of the the facility, which is valued at £15million, is safeguarded and has already received widespread support.

Full Article >> Click Liverpool


Brazil WCup workers threaten nationwide strike – February 8th

Workers building and renovating Brazil’s stadiums for the 2014 World Cup are threatening to go on strike if employers don’t agree to their demands for unified salaries and benefits.

There have been isolated strikes across the nation, but unions representing the workers in each of the 12 host cities are trying to come together to plead for better conditions.

Union leader Claudio da Silva Gomes said Tuesday the workers are ready to go on strike as early as next month if construction companies don’t agree to give employees the same salaries and benefits regardless of the venue.

Full Article >> Business Week


La Liga faces new labour crisis – February 10th

The prospect of further strike action in La Liga has been raised after the Spanish Football League (LFP) announced that it has terminated talks with the players’ union (AFE) on a wide-ranging agreement concerning wages and working conditions.

The LFP made the announcement on Thursday outlining six main points of disagreement and bemoaning the “intransigence” of the AFE. The latest news comes just months after players finally agreed to call off a damaging strike that delayed the start of the domestic Liga campaign for the first time in 27 years.

Full Article >> Soccerex


Pressure on Brazilian soccer chief mounts – February 12th

Brazilian football head Ricardo Teixeira is under increasing pressure to step down after the country’s largest newspaper published a report linking him to a company being investigated for over-billing an international friendly four years ago.

The story by the Folha de S. Paulo newspaper on Thursday comes amid widespread reports that Teixeira will resign or take a leave of absence, effectively ending his contentious 23-year rule of Brazilian football and the national team.

Full Article >> Al Jazeera


Rangers FC signals administration move – February 13th

Rangers Football Club has confirmed it has filed legal papers at the Court of Session to appoint administrators.

The club said it would continue with “business as usual” until it decided whether to take that step.

Rangers now has 10 days to make a decision. In the meantime, it said there would be “no impact on season ticket holders and shareholders”.

The move comes while Rangers awaits a tax tribunal decision over a disputed bill, plus penalties, totalling £49m.

Full Article >> BBC


FIFA Probes $56 Million Soccer Player Trading Operation – February 16th

Soccer’s ruling body FIFA will investigate an arrangement in which Brazilian players including the Porto striker known as “Hulk” are traded to European clubs via a Uruguayan team for which they never appear.

Player agent Juan Figer arranges for Club Atletico Rentistas, one of Montevideo’s smaller teams, to sign his clients and then loans them to a higher-profile club, according to Rentistas President Mario Bursztyn. The transfer fee when the player is traded is redirected to a company owned by Figer called Lamico, Bursztyn said in an interview.

Full Article >> Bloomberg BusinessWeek


Portsmouth go into administration for the second time in three seasons – February 17th

It is almost exactly two years since Portsmouth last suffered insolvency, and with it relegation from the Premier League.

Indeed, the latest 10 points may not be the final sanction the club receives. Portsmouth emerged from their last administration after agreeing a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA)

under which creditors, including HM Revenue & Customs, would receive a payment of 20p in the pound on their debts.

Full Article >> The Telegraph


Man United’s cash reserves fall by 100 million GBP – February 21st

Manchester United’s cash reserves fell by 100 million pounds ($158 million) in six months partially to finance an investment in the squad that is failing to maintain the English champions’ dominance on the pitch.

As a result of spending that also took in stadium improvements and a bond repurchase program, the Old Trafford bank balance dropped from 150.6 million pounds to 50.9 million pounds ($238 million to $80 million) to Dec. 31, the club’s quarterly accounts revealed on Tuesday.

Full Article >> Sports Illustrated



With New York City faltering, Orlando makes MLS push – February 22nd

Major League Soccer is desperate for a presence in New York City. But The Big Apple isn’t exactly ready for MLS.

The comprehensive restructuring of the New York Cosmos expansion bid and the lack of public progress toward building a stadium in the five boroughs have thrust a once-unlikely candidate toward the front of the race for team No. 20—Orlando.

The theme park capital’s bona fides were enhanced this week with the confirmation that MLS commissioner Don Garber will meet March 1 with Orlando mayor Buddy Dyer, city leaders and fans of USL Pro (third division) club Orlando City, which has every intention of transitioning from minor to major league.

Full Article >> Sporting News


Dortmund announce record revenue – February 24th

Bundesliga champions Borussia Dortmund have smashed their revenue record as they announced that they have broken the €100 million barrier for the first time.

Full Article >> ESPN


Al Jazeera tipped to challenge Sky for EPL rights – February 29th

Premier League clubs could be set for another huge cash windfall if the “realistic prospect” of Al Jazeera challenging rival Sky for the UK television rights comes to pass, according to a senior ESPN executive.

The English Premier League is the world’s richest football league and its last three-year television deal, which runs out next season, brought in £3.5 billion ($5.4 billion, 4.1 billion euros), of which £1.4 billion was paid by foreign broadcasters.

Full Article >> Associated Free Press


Billionaire Palmer Has A-League Soccer License Terminated by Lowy-Run Body – February 29th

Football Federation Australia revoked the A-League soccer license held by Gold Coast United’s billionaire owner Clive Palmer, who said he intends to take legal action against the decision.

Gold Coast, which is last in the 10-team league, was today issued with a notice of termination following three “clear breaches” of the club participation agreement, including “deliberate contravention” of FFA policies and repeated public statements bringing the league and governing body into disrepute, FFA Chairman Frank Lowy said.

Full Article >> Bloomberg News


Darlington Fans Use Internet to Raise Funds to Buy English Soccer Team – February 29th

Fans of English soccer team Darlington have turned to the Internet to help them keep their 129-year-old club running.

Darlington, which plays in England’s fifth tier, went into administration, a form of bankruptcy, on Jan. 3. Facing liquidation, the supporters stepped in and formed a company which turned to crowdfunding — the soliciting and pooling of small investments, often online — to raise money to buy the team.

Full Article >> Bloomberg News

The Month in Soccer Business: February 2012

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