August 31, 2006

Transfer Deadline Day

can it really be true?

has alan pardew pulled of one of the most staggering signings in the history of the premierships? tevez and mascherano on loan for a season?
if they are at west ham, that’s incredible for all at upton park and will be a major blow to man utd and arsenal. something doesn’t seem right about it though, why go on loan to west ham for a season? if corinthians were willing to let them go on loan (perhaps to put them in the market in europe) surely they’d want them to go to a club looking to sign them permanently. and if tevez and mascherano are going to try to get themselves into european football, why west ham?
i’ve got a feeling there’s more to this one, my theory, they both want to play in italy or at real madrid but are waiting a year to see what happens to clubs like AC Milan and Juve, and whether Real madrid can get back to their best. watch this space.

also, how much involvement has this Media Sports Investments (MSI) got to do with this. media reports are suggesting they own the right to the two players (whatver that means) and have arranged the transfer. the company is based in london, any coincidence? im very confused.

ps: im back – the turze

[EDIT – Since Martyn posted this, the deal has gone through with both players being sold to West Ham from MSI for an undisclosed fee – Peter]


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  1. Stuart Coles

    This article is well worth a read, and has an interesting take on the subject.

    31 Aug 2006, 13:44

  2. there is no doubt that MSI are behind this loan move – and it would not surprise me if Tevez and Mascherano ended up at Chelsea next season, after settling in England.
    it would be a coup for West HAm, as i expected both the Argentines to turn up somewhere like Arsenal.

    wouldn’t surprise me if when the Hammers face Chelsea, Tevez and Mascherano have niggling injuries that they recover from the day after.

    moving away, why have spurs signed malbranque? – they have so many midfielders, and it is a left winger they need. i feel that steed would have been better served going to west ham, bolton or newcastle.

    31 Aug 2006, 16:10

  3. I think 5Live were speculating that MSI might actually be interested in buying West Ham, and using them as a feeder club for Corinthians.

    Firstly, this sounds illegal if the rumours about Abramovich are true.

    Secondly, it sounds implausible as I wouldn’t have thought a Brazilian team would want/need a British feeder club.

    I think the Chelsea theory sounds far more likely, and wouldn’t be at all surprised to see them move there in a year (although one wonders why they don’t just move there now – money laundering or something?)

    31 Aug 2006, 16:14

  4. it would seem if rumour is correct that MSI (under the influence of Abramovich have brought them to London to get them settled for a year. That way chelsea can see how they cope with English football etc.

    In your response Chris to why Chelsea haven’t signed them and done it this way – if Chelsea are genuinely interested in signing them, they don’t want them going anywhere else. They have both been looking to leave Corinthians and say a big European club signed them, then they might get settled there and not want to leave or that club might refuse to sell. This way, only being on loan, they adjust to England and are at a club that cannot afford to buy them, meaning when Chelsea want them, say at the end of the year, it’s very smooth sailing. I don’t think Chelsea wanted to buy this summer, but this way no-one else gets to either.

    The bit i don’t get is still how MSI are able to “own” these players, surely they’re under contract at Corinthians and it is Corinthians decision as how to use them. What are Corinthians getting out of this (is there a fee being paid to them from MSI?) or are they just waiting for transfer fees next season?

    it will be interesting to see what happens when west ham play chelsea. it’s interesting how this has still only come from teves’ website, west ham have said nothing about this.

    if these theories are true, then west ham have got themselves 2 quality players for 1 year, but at what price morally? are they just doing chelsea’s bidding for them? the idea of MSI planning a bid for West Ham might explain this but if Abramovich is involved in MSI, then there may be problems with that, concerning ownership of more than 1 club in the same league.

    31 Aug 2006, 16:40

  5. ps: also in response to Chris – there’s no way that corinthians would be using west ham as a feeder club, if anything it would be the other way round, west ham using corinthians to get good south american players easily. corinthians would have no use for their players spending time at west ham, or taking west ham players.

    31 Aug 2006, 16:42

  6. in response to rob – yes im adding yet another comment – i don’t get malbranque going to spurs, they should just cough up the cash for downing – they need a left winger, not another right-sided one. unless spurs are planning on using lennon on the left which he did at leeds sometimes.
    malbranque at newcastle would have been good for them.

    31 Aug 2006, 16:43

  7. I’m still a little sceptical about this deal going through at all – so far it’s still only been confirmed by Tevez’s website, and not by either club. Only 7 hours left… why are West Ham being so quiet about it?

    31 Aug 2006, 17:06

  8. I know no one likes listening to Manchester United fans but we really really really did warn you guys about Chelsea a long time ago. Robben. Mikel. Both were about to (or actually had) signed for us when Chelsea swooped. But of course back then everyone said it was us having sour grapes about no longer being no.1 so we were ignored.

    It’s simple. I think it’s a setup because, no offence to WHU fans, but they’re not a big enough club to attract this sort of talent. Witness Portsmouth’s big budget and lack of star signings. If their money wasn’t enough, how the hell did WHU, who don’t even have that sort of money, get this pair? It could do real damage to WHU, they could lose players who they’ll need as soon as Chelsea swoop for the Argentines, and be left like Norwich were in the 1990s, asset stripped.

    D.O.D.G.Y.

    31 Aug 2006, 17:13

  9. I spoke too soon… http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/w/west_ham_utd/5301068.stm

    31 Aug 2006, 17:25

  10. Christopher Rossdale

    Surely the fact that it’s a seemingly complete deal – rather than a loan – makes things all the more suspect?

    31 Aug 2006, 18:05

  11. In response to Martyn. Financial institutions can own players (Viduka was owned by a private company whilst he was at Leeds), however as Chris R mentioned according to the press West Ham have bought the players, which makes the whole thing more complicated. Why not sell to the highest bidder? At this stage the most likely consipracies seem to be that Mr Abramovich has sent the players to West Ham to keep them out of the way, or that MSI are planning the buy West Ham so have sold them something they intend to get back. Either way, what about the players in this? Do South Americans have no rights?

    31 Aug 2006, 18:27

  12. this stinks, it stinks so much, i can the smell the whiff in thatcham.
    all we’re being told is undisclosed fees and permanent contracts, we don’t know how much has been spent and how long they are tied to the club. could they be on just one year contacts so at the end of the season they are free to move to who they ever want (CHELSEA).
    It doesn’t make sense.
    Why sign permanent deals with West Ham who are in UEFA Cup?
    I still don’t understand how MSI (who tried to buy West Ham in the recent past) can own the rights to the players since they were contracted to a club, who bought them.
    In the BBC article, it says the president of MSI said in May, Tevez would only leave Corinthians if his contract relase clause was paid (thought to be between 69 and 83 million). was this a contract release from Corinthians or MSI? I know im repeating myself but how can MSI own the rights to aplayer whilst contracted to a club, this isn’t just a sports agency group working for them.
    Why are West Ham being so deliberately confidential?
    Where have West Ham got this money from?
    Or are MSI footing the bill? (on behalf of mr abramovich)
    If West Ham are involved in a Chelsea/MSI deal, they are guilty of corruption of the game as well as all the other parties involved.
    I must admit some of my obvious frustration and anger at this deal is because they are both players who should be playing on the biggest stage, and when players don’t, it annoys me.
    On a slightly lighter note to finish (for the time being anyway), i’m just glad liverpool have played West Ham once already this season.

    31 Aug 2006, 18:35

  13. on a little side-note, can’t help but not add one more comment – RaW Sport is once again top of the most discussed blogs list. might have something to do with me rmabling on about this all day, but oh well, RaW Sport … take a bow.

    31 Aug 2006, 18:37

  14. Might have something to do with sport being far more interesting than people’s personal ramblings (I am sooooo including myself in that!)

    University/Union gossip always does similarly well.

    31 Aug 2006, 20:15

  15. Allan Smith

    Deadline day is always a lot of fun. I heard a crackpot idea that transfers should only take place on two days per year. After the (ongoing) fun of today, it’s not such a shabby idea.

    Rumour has it that Man Utd have a big announcement shortly.

    Yet again Arsenal appear to be ruling the transfer market; want-aways Reyes and Cole out, proven Baptista and Gallas in?

    According to the official Cov site, we signed Nacho Novo – oh no we didn’t, we signed Leon McKenzie – oh no we didn’t – oh ok, we did. At the moment, ex-Arsenal midfielder Stephen Hughes is our reserve keeper…

    31 Aug 2006, 21:41

  16. Where’d you hear the Man U rumour?

    31 Aug 2006, 21:46

  17. why can’t we leave the conspiracy theories behind us and embrace the fact that two exciting south americans will be playing in the premiership this season for a club outside the top four.

    then again, west ham can only get screwed over if the transfers are as dodgy as they seem to be.

    martyn – in response to how are they owned by MSI – in south america player contracts are often owned by their agents who get most of the money when a transfer is involved. e.g. last year brighton ‘bought’ federico turienzo – in fact paying about £150,000 to his agent. he was not the next batistuta as many had hoped and we had to pay another £100,000 for him to bugger off at the end of the season (after 4 appearances). however, tevez and mascherano might be more successful.

    yes allan, transfer deadline day can be exciting, but if your small club doesn’t sign the prolific striker it needs, or some premiership ‘giant’ comes in for a first-team teenager then you can be well and truly shafted until january.

    I FEAR THE WINDOW

    31 Aug 2006, 21:50

  18. someone has sent in an email into skysports news saying theyve seen david trezeguet leaving old trafford tonight.

    maybe that’s your man utd rumour chris.

    liverpool have got rid of crappy kromkamp, wahoo! but not much cover at the the back now

    31 Aug 2006, 22:46

  19. Cole has gone to Chelsea, only announced in the last half hour.

    But only £5m cash? I wouldn’t have rated Gallas at that much, but that may be due to the time pressure. Be interesting to see the reaction if either play when the two sides meet.

    At work, there were many very happy Hammers and one substantially miffed Newcastle fan.

    01 Sep 2006, 01:55

  20. Daisy

    my god, listen to all your sour grapes. Holly, really – there are a lot of mugs who blog but you are not normally one of them. For god’s sake engage your brain: where do you get your info on Abramovich being related to MSI? You have not even bothered to find this out, you’ve just waded in without thinking. The actual situation is that Kia Joorabchian, an Iranian businessman, is the head of MSI. Its financial backers remain unclear, because it is quite a shady organisation, but rumours persist that there is a Russian who has a 15% stake. Every reputable organisation and institution who have reported and investigated this (including Interpol, the Brazilian police and the Observer) suggest that it is Boris Berezovsky who has a stake in the club, something which is backed up by another stakeholder in MSI, Badri Patarkatsishvili, who suggested this much in an interview recently. Berezovsky was Abramovich’s protege, but they are now enemies – he is suing Abramovich over financial misdealing and has accused him of siding with Vladimir Putin over Putin’s attempt to prosecute Berezovsky, which has led to the latter’s exile in London.

    The only people who have reported that it is Abramovich who has a stake in MSI are bloggers and rumour-mongers who have not followed any of the rigorous investigations and paper trails the above organisations looked at, instead preferring to follow the highly imaginative assumption that if a Russian is investing in football, it must be Abramovich.

    But even if that wasn’t the case, your conspiracy theory makes no sense! Why on earth would it be in Chelsea’s interests to send two brilliant players, who would probably get into the Chelsea first team, to a domestic rival? On a permanent basis, not even a loan? It’s true they have in the past bought good players who they haven’t played and loaned out instead – but these have been people like Glen Johnson and Alexei Smertin, not Carlos bloody Tevez. And we haven’t even got Tevez and Mascherano on a loan – it’s a permanent deal.

    Now, I am not going to pretend that West Ham signing two of the best players in the world was the kind of thing I am used to every day. I am just as gobsmacked as everyone else, and I will admit that we are not the kind of big club who can normally go in for these players. There may even be some dodginess in this, but it has nothing to do with Chelsea.

    My own theory, which has a lot more to do with the facts than any of this Chelsea bollocks, is that MSI want to buy West Ham. Abramovich is not the only dodgy Russian/central European businessman who wants to invest money in English football. The MSI owner, Kia Joorabchian, attempted to buy West Ham a year ago and Terry Brown rebuffed them. My guess would be that they have paid the transfers of the players – or possibly forgone the transfer fee, depending on who owns the player – as some kind of ‘deposit’ or leverage to a further bid for the club. And in fact, as I sit here watching Sky Sports news, that is pretty much what all tomorrow’s papers are saying – this is preliminary to a £200m bid for the club. Sod all about it being a front for Abramovich.

    Plenty of foreigners are investing in English football – Portsmouth, Villa, Man U. No-one claims that they are just Chelsea ciphers. This is all just sour grapes from the so-called ‘big’ clubs who think they have a god-given right to the top players. Actually, this is great news for the Premiership and for everyone who wants to see a high-quality and competitive Premiership – two world-class players for everyone to watch, and two world-class players who are playing for a smaller club and therefore won’t just reinforce the big clubs’ dominance. This will lead to greater competitiveness, which can only be a good thing.

    01 Sep 2006, 03:14

  21. Mathew Mannion

    Rumour now is MSI are looking to buy West Ham, as predicted sometime earlier^

    01 Sep 2006, 08:39

  22. Moral of the story:

    Don’t pay any attention to Sky Sports News (Trezeguet my arse). Trust Radio 5Live instead.

    01 Sep 2006, 09:16

  23. Daisy I never mentioned MSI. When I commented it was a loan deal and a suspicious looking one at that. Since it became two permanent deals I’ve changed my mind and don’t think Chelsea are likely to be involved, but had no computer access till now. I still feel my reaction to the information I had at the time was not too unreasonable – the Robben and Mikel cases are things we still feel sore about, and Chelsea weren’t exactly gentlemanly about them (although more fool me for expecting any standards in modern football).

    I also never said I thought the top clubs had a right to the most expensive players. Hell, I support Man Utd, generally speaking the more expensive the signing the more likely he is to be rubbish (Veron anyone?). Increased competitivity is a good thing, although the price somewhere along the line will be paid if spending becomes unsustainable – it could well lead to more Leeds or Fiorentinas.

    And don’t tell me the Glazers are investing in football. They’ve given us fuck all but debt and I want rid.

    01 Sep 2006, 12:31

  24. Anyway, we got Ole Solksjaer! He’s a million years old and has three broken knees but he’ll still score more than all the Argentines in the Premiership put together :P

    01 Sep 2006, 12:35

  25. Daisy

    Holly – your original post was unbelievably sanctimonious and patronising, and gave the impression that you were speaking facts, not totally unsubstantiated opinion. This is true of most of the other posts on this blog, some of which do mention MSI and come up with the same illogical and unsubstantiated arguments.

    AND I never said that you said the big clubs had a god-given right to the most expensive players. I said that you (and others) suggested that big clubs had a right to the best players, which I think is a fair interpretation of ‘they’re not a big enough club to attract this sort of talent’.

    And it wasn’t just you – nearly everyone was jumping on the let’s-talk-shit bandwagon. This article is an interesting read? No it’s not, it’s a half-baked concoction of half-truths, rumour, circumstance and outright lies, cobbled together in badly-spelt ludicrous tough-man prose.

    Anyway, I hope Man U do all right this season – they play better football than Chelsea and I’d rather see them win the league, as long as we get to win at Upton Park. Good to see Ole GS back as well.

    01 Sep 2006, 17:48

  26. Yeah. The links between Abramovich and MSI are supposed to be very obscure; that anything suspect in the world of football transfers is inevitably traced back to Chelsea speaks volumes, though, about how they’ve conducted their operations since they’ve been tapping Russian oil.

    On Tevez and Mascherano: Joorbiachan has simply left them in the Upton parking lot while he pops to the bank to sort out his agency’s takeover of West Ham. It appears that MSI were so keen to get the pair of them out of Corinthians, Hammers fan Kia struck a cut-price deal when none of the big clubs would stump up the asking price. Malcolm Glazer, I’m looking at you.

    Mascherano will probably end up with United next summer for anything between £20 and £30m. Both he and Tevez are fantastic footballers, obviously, but they’re damaged goods for sure by now; trailed like circus animals from Argentina to an underachieving Brazillian club, and from there to West Ham to serve their keeper’s private agenda, their talent on its own may not be enough to offset the treachery that seems to come part-and-parcel with their signing.

    01 Sep 2006, 18:25

  27. I said that you (and others) suggested that big clubs had a right to the best players,

    Then I dispute your interpretation of my words. “They’re not a big enough club to attract this sort of talent”. I was merely being extremely honest. Big players are most likely to go to big clubs. Have you seen Anelka this week? He’s a tossbucket but in a way I was impressed (and appalled) by his mercenary honesty that he would only be certain to stay at Bolton if they get into the Champion’s League. These big players want to be internationals, to win big trophies and they don’t see themselves doing so at clubs which haven’t won much at all in decades (although West Ham won the World Cup in 1966 didn’t they?).

    If Tevez had signed for Nottingham Forest there’d be absolute incredulity on a mammoth scale. You might say “but he would never have signed for Nottingham Forest” but how’s that different to me being shocked at him joining WHU. Forest have a more impressive trophy cabinet than 95% of all English clubs and are more likely than most to win silverware this year (albeit League 1). It’s not about a god given right to the best players, it’s just the shock at a less successful club getting them and the fact that it just doesn’t happen (often) which leads to suspicion. It’s not like they’re old die hard Hammers going to the club of their childhood dreams.

    My original post might seem patronising but as I said, it stank of Chelsea interfering. This has turned out to be unlikely but, as I keep saying, can you blame a Man Utd fan? Would a Leeds Utd fan be any less likely to think the same?

    Anyway, I’ve decided on a new conspiracy theory. It’s all part of a massive WHU hatched plan to really piss off Spurs. Think about it. Who stopped them finishing 4th last year with that dodgy dinner? And now who looks like they have a very good chance of pipping Spurs to forth with their new players? Deny that Daisy, hehe!

    02 Sep 2006, 10:39

  28. As a person who works with Spurs-hating Happy Hammers, I second that motion.

    04 Sep 2006, 00:44

  29. According to reports Man Utd were twice given the chance to sign Mascherano. Given how much they rate him they were obviously very unhappy about the terms of any potential deal.

    04 Sep 2006, 13:42

  30. i heard one of the terms was that they musty play every game unless injured, which very few clubs would agree to, as they would want to be able to rest them / drop them if not playing well / drop them if not in the plans for that particular match.

    06 Sep 2006, 14:08

  31. steven hoon

    this west ham story is as boring as the blair resignation saga. most premiership clubs have strengthened this summer, and the league should be very exciting. i really fear for the promoted teams though

    as for my own personal team, got to say a big well done to harry redknapp. i always knew kanu would do ajob, but he is absolutly fantastic!!

    06 Sep 2006, 21:55


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