Arsenal and Van Persie Transfer Saga - Why European Soccer Needs Payroll Caps

Author: Varun Gupta
Published: July 13, 2012 at 6:31 am
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It has been painful being a Gunner for the last 6 years. 2005 FA cup victory feels like a century back. Since then the storied club has been moving from one season to the next without any real hope of dominance in the league or in the UEFA Champions League. Reason for this below par performance has been plain simple - Arsenal have stuck to their philosophy which has become obsolete.

Present club football system is more reflective of corporate deal-making where you can buy competition to establish dominance. Professional agencies or individual agents play the role of advisers while clubs act as buyers and seller of their valuable assets, players.

A sports culture where you scout, recruit and groom talent to win silverware has gradually vanished. Clubs can buy trophies by buying out competition - Man City did that last year in the English Premier League. Arsenal on the other hand have stuck by the principle of winning by hard work and preserving fiscal sanity.

Arsenal lost Adebayor and Kolo Toure in 2010 followed by Nasri, Fabregas and Clichy last year to this trend of clubs buying out competition by spending unprecedented amounts of money. This trend is set to continue with the imminent departure of Van Persie, Arsenal's Captain, front-man and top goal scorer of last year. Rumors are abound, competing clubs would raise his wages to as much as GBP 250k a week, more than double of Arsenal's self imposed ceiling of GBP 100k.

When you see players trashing loyalty for money in the disguise of winning trophies, you begin to respect players like Gary Neville, Ryan Giggs, and Steven Gerard who have stuck around with their clubs for long spells despite commanding astronomical valuations for a potential transfer. Players like Van Persie and Samir Nasri on the other hand represent new breed of players who disregard the club that paid them through injuries and nurtured them into world class talent. Van Persie for example made just over a 100 starts in his 7 year injury pronged stint at Arsenal before Wenger's trust in him paid off last year. leading to his golden boot and footballer of year award.

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