football diversion

The excitement (and craziness) of the football transfer day deadline ended last night at 23.00h (although in fact some signings weren’t completed until 01.30h)

A record £835m was spent during the UK summer transfer season – a sum that I don’t want to think about too much because the morality of football finances is pretty disturbing. It is virtually impossible to come up with any meaningful defence for paying one man £350,000 a week for playing football, especially when the main ‘justification’ for the sum relates to UK taxation – he has come from Monaco where he paid virtually no tax, so ‘needs’ to be paid a larger gross sum in order to maintain his net salary.

Putting to one side the ludicrous finances I enjoyed the entertainment of the final hours of transfer deadline day. The ‘will he come, won’t he come, will he clear the signing process on time?’ debates are great fun, particularly if they don’t relate to one’s own team. In the event Southampton offered its fans a cliffhanger – it was reported earlier in the evening that 2 players were undergoing medicals at the club’s training ground, but there was then an ominous silence. As the deadline gong sounded at 23.00h neither player appeared to have been signed, and twitter was full of speculation. Happily by two minutes to midnight both players had been signed and confirmed as Saints FC players.