Two influential European outlets, French sports daily L’Équipe and German news daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung both gave considerable coverage to Javier Tebas yesterday. The interview from last week's Soccerex convention in Manchester with Tebas' complaints about financial fair-play being the motive. With his characteristic provocative style the head of LaLiga has ensured that the matter is being debated in mass media. He suggests that PSG (and indeed Manchester City) are two clubs being propped up by two states and this ensures that their financial reach is beyond that of other clubs and they act without fear of retribution in the transfer market being prepared to pay inflated prices for football players.
Transformation in LaLiga
Javier Tebas is not alone in his line of thinking with Jose Mourinho voicing similar concerns recently but Tebas carries the weight of LaLiga on his shoulders. He has been instrumental in the transformation of an organisation that had huge debts with the Inland Revenue, where non payment to players was common place and featured a disproportionate amount of its clubs going into financial administration. The focus and dynamic has changed, and now clubs must observe strict guidelines with a view to expenditure and income. LaLiga has been transformed and for the better with the Spanish league governing body now considered a prestigious organisation where all clubs have seen an upside in the money flowing into the game via lucrative television contracts.
Financial fair-play has been with us for some years now and dictates that European football clubs must operate withing the confines of the rules stipulated by governing body UEFA. The reality is that everyone adheres to these rules except UEFA, who pretend to act concerned in the case of a possible violation to the regulatory system. I find it hard to accept that PSG or Man. City generate sufficient income to be able to spend what they do on players. When more people talk openly about FFP, the better for us all. In a way the coverage in both France and Germany media that have focused on the ruling are indeed a small victory for Tebas.