Europe’s Big Spenders.
Whatever nickname has been applied to Real Madrid in previous decades has been based on the very simple and true fact that they have, regardless of their league position or Champions League success, been able to attract and afford the best players in the world. Every time a player started to breakthrough in another league, or made a name for themselves at an international tournament, word would start to link them to Real Madrid. The money seemed to be endless, the possibilities seemed to be unlimited. But as we end 2020, we have to approach a very serious question….Have Real Madrid ran out of money? Are the big, free spending Galacticos unable to shell out the money needed to keep them in the elite?
Even at the height of their success earlier this decade, there were rumours circulating that huge debts were being hidden or that they were playing US online casinos for real money. The press latched on and rumours swirled but the money kept being spent. The euros kept being spent and the trophies kept coming. Figures of 541 million euros of debt were quoted as way back as 2013.
Not only have player expenses risen, but an aging stadium has required multi million round renovations. Massive compensation paid to a revolving door of managers and an income hit by Covid-19 is all creating something of a perfect storm of financial woe.
When Real Madrid sold Hakimi to Inter Milan Zinedine Zidane openly said there were financial considerations involved in the sale. When would you ever have heard such a quip from a Real Madrid manager in previous decades? The answer is never….
The way Real Madrid is operated, some would argue, by having no set owner, means they have nothing to fall back on when financial situations emerge. In many ways Real Madrid operate in the way that many feel “should” happen in football, but when competing on domestic and European fronts against clubs with Billionaire owners, life cane be hard on the financial front like ace pokies online. Running this system has meant a loss for many years, and the glitz and glamour can only go some way to hiding the bank balance slipping more and more into the red!
Back to the Stadium development. We are talking over 500 million Euros and many fans are asking for what? For a club piled in debt, saddling more for a redevelopment that is not adding a single extra seat and adding a hotel and retail plaza that a) doesn’t appear in demand and b) seems ill fitting in the uncertain word of Covid.
And if you are a Real Madrid fan, even if the debt isn’t bad enough, I suggest you don’t look at the figures of interest that are due to be paid. You may shed a tear. Without changes to Spanish football law, and without the injection of large amounts of Cash, anyone with a sensible head can see that Real Madrid cannot continue at the current rate, cuts will have to be made and the only short term solution is on the playing front. Getting rid of players, easing recruitment and not paying crazy wages is not in the tradition of Real Madrd but it may well soon have to be! But the money in football has slipped due to Covid….the future in all fronts remains unknown. Real Madrid are heading for disaster and there seems to be no way out.