Global Business of Soccer Recap

We would like to welcome readers, both new and returning, to this week’s Global Recap where we at Business of Soccer take the opportunity to review the past week’s major developments and stories in Sponsorship, Marketing, Finance, Law and much more.

 

Real Madrid’s Plans for $1 Billion Resort in the UAE Faces Setbacks (Business of Soccer)

Plans have been put on hold for the proposed $1 billion Real Madrid-themed resort in Ras al-Khaimah, the United Arab Emirates. There had been indications from Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority (RAKIA) in June that the plan would face setbacks due to a lack of financial resources. The resort was expected to include a 450-room hotel, marina, yacht club, museum, amusement park and 10,000-seat stadium on 50 hectares of land. Though the project had been announced in March 2012, little progress had been made since.

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Are Changes to the FIFA Transfer and Registration Regulations on the Horizon? (Business of Soccer)
English-born footballer Joe Yoffe, a little-known journeyman who has made his way through lower leagues in England, Spain, Ireland, Australia, Canada, and, most recently, Iceland, is considering bringing a legal challenge to FIFA transfer and registration regulations. Yoffe claims that the FIFA regulations, which prohibit out-of-contract players from signing with new clubs if their contracts expire in between transfer windows, limits his and other footballers’ freedom of movement and ability to earn a living.

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Agents: A Look at Their Fees and the Services They Provide (Part One)

Within the realm of soccer, much of the discussion regarding agents tends to focus on the divisive topic of the fees they garner. The topic becomes increasingly controversial with the perceived lack of transparency in the sport, exemplified by the fact that out of the one hundred and fifteen transfers that occurred in the Barclay’s Premier League this summer only five involved transfer fees that were publicly disclosed. The lack of disclosure of the total transfer fees only compounds the inability to discern from that number what amount was paid in agent fees.

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The Proliferation of Data-Driven Analysis in Football (Part Two: The Coaches)

A key player in the stats arena that we looked at was Manchester City, so it’s no surprise that the BBC article just cited starts with City as a club to look at: They, after all, employ 10 full-time data analysts just for the first team (and this was the picture, at the time of writing, almost six months ago), and club captain Vincent Kompany has realized the value of in-depth analysis, such that he’s reportedly started meeting with his fellow defenders and the data analysts to discuss their findings.

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Garber, Gulati and Pallotta Discuss Role of the United States in the Industry

As a part of the Bloomberg Link Sports Business Summit in New York, a panel discussion was held to expand on the outlook of soccer in the United States, as well as the impact of American companies on the global soccer industry. Don Garber, Commissioner of Major League Soccer and Chief Executive of Soccer United Marketing SUM), Sunil Gulati, President of the United States Soccer Federation and member of the FIFA Executive Committee, and James Pallotta, Chairman and Managing Director of Raptor Group Holdings and President of AS Roma, participated in the interview.

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Financial Feasibility of Winter World Cup Threatened

In the world of international soccer, nothing is more controversial at the moment than the 2022 World Cup to be hosted in Qatar. The divisive subject with regards to Qatar has to do with temperatures expected during the tournament. With the World Cup traditionally held during Northern Hemisphere summers, temperatures in Qatar have the potential to reach far above 100 degrees Fahrenheit. It is for this reason that discussions have reached as high as the FIFA Executive Committee, who meet twice annually, regarding the potential of moving the World Cup to winter months to avoid the high temperatures altogether.

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Arsenal Begin Search for Potential Wenger Replacement

North London Barclays Premier League (BPL) club Arsenal are scouting potential new manager options should incumbent Arsene Wenger’s contract renewal talks go south. If the Frenchman’s comment that he “is in no hurry” to extend his current contract as the Gunners’ manager is any indication of how these future contract meetings will go, it would not be much of a surprise to see the most tenured active BPL manager (17 years with same team) on his way out at the conclusion of his current deal with the club in June 2014.

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La Liga Chief Encourages ‘Third Party’ Investment, Defying UEFA (Bloomberg)

The Spanish soccer league’s president wants more investors to buy stakes in the transfer rights of players, clashing with plans by the sport’s European ruling body, UEFA, to outlaw the practice.

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UEFA Gets 32 Match-Hosting Bids for 2020 Pan-Europe Championship (Bloomberg)

The 16th edition of the quadrennial competition will be held in 13 cities across the continent, a first for the tournament. The championship, which began in 1960, is traditionally hosted either by a single nation or, on three occasions, two neighboring countries.

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UEFA Withholds Prize Money of Six Teams Because of Debts (Bloomberg)

European soccer ruling body UEFA temporarily withheld the prize money of six clubs for failing to comply with so-called financial fair play rules. The six — Romania’s Astra Ploiesti, Ukraine’s Metalurh Donetsk, Croatia’s Hajduk Split, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Zrinjski, Skonto of Latvia and Turkey’s Trabzonspor — were found to owe money to other clubs, employees or tax authorities, UEFA said today in an e-mailed statement.

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Reporting on the business side of the world's game.