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Struggling Spurs still attract financial interest

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Mihir Bose | 11:56 UK time, Tuesday, 30 September 2008

They may be bottom of the Premier League and enduring their worst start to a season for 53 years, but two bids are being prepared to buy Tottenham Hotspur.

One potential bidder is a British consortium, while another is a Singapore-based Asian billionaire.

This possible Asian bid involves the Israeli super-agent Pini Zahavi, who was responsible for bringing Roman Abramovich to Chelsea back in 2003. Abramovich had looked at Spurs, but was put off by the prospect of having to pay £150m and never made an offer.

Tottenham, a quoted company currently valued at round £350m, have consistently said they are not looking to sell.

It would be up to the chairman Daniel Levy and the board to judge what is a fair value for the club with £400m believed to be a fair price. If such an offer was made, and it was felt to be genuine, then Levy and the board would be duty bound to inform their shareholders.

Although Spurs have a lot of shareholders, most have very small stakes and are generally fans. The club is effectively owned by Enic, a private sports and media company which holds 82% of the club. Joe Lewis, the overseas-based British businessman owns 80% of Enic with Levy owning most of the rest of the company.

Lewis lost nearly £400m after the collapse of American investment bank Bear Stearns.

Despite Tottenham's parlous on-field position, the club is considered an extremely attractive buy - mainly because Levy has run a successful business.

The club are about to announce very good set of results for the year ending in June. This could see profits climb to about £30m and turnover rise to £115m, with the increases due to Spurs' Carling Cup victory and higher income from the new Sky-Setanta Premier League television deal. In addition, plans are well advanced for a new, redeveloped stadium at White Hart Lane.

But all this will mean little to fans as they look at the league table and wonder when the players might win their first league game.

The club are keen to dismiss any talk of manager Juande Ramos having another four games to stop the rot.

The prospect of changing coach barely 12 months after he arrived is considered too awful to contemplate. The view is the slump will have to be sorted out by the football side.

However, the fact remains Levy's financial success is not matched by his ability to find an effective football management team, always one of the most important requirements for any successful club.

Glenn Hoddle, Levy's first appointment, lasted nearly two-and-a-half years. When he was sacked in September 2003, Spurs spent the rest of the season under the caretaker management of then football director David Pleat.

Levy looked at getting the Italian Giovanni Trappatoni, with one suggestion being that Mark Hughes should work with him.

Having suggested he might come to White Hart Lane, Trappatoni subsequently changed his mind, saying his wife did not fancy London.

In the summer of 2004, Levy, with much fanfare, announced the arrival of Jacques Santini as coach and Frank Arnesen as football director. The club hailed Santini as "Jacques the Lad" describing it as "one of the biggest coups in Premiership history".

He was gone five months and two days later.

Arnesen was billed as "the Great Dane" and the official magazine talked of the club's "fresh new continental approach towards footballing matters".

He was gone by the end of the season.

So far Martin Jol, Santini's number two, has been the longest-serving manager under Levy, but even he did not complete three years.

Through all this turmoil, Levy appears to have learnt two lessons: one, avoid buying players over 28; and two, never allow a player's contract to go into his final year.

When Levy took over, the big question was whether Spurs could keep Sol Campbell. He was in his last year and ended up leaving on a free transfer to Arsenal. Levy was determined never to be trapped like that again.

This explains why Michael Carrick and Jermain Defoe were both sold, at a financial profit but with the price now being paid on the field.

In Hoddle's first year players well over the age of 30 like Gus Poyet and Teddy Sheringham were bought.

They nearly produced the League Cup, and on the way to the final Tottenham beat Chelsea 5-1, but it proved another nearly moment for Spurs.

Levy's deal-making skills may be legendary, and feared by the rest of the Premier League, but failure to translate this on the field of play means Tottenham may be condemned to remain a club where the playing record does not match the financial results.


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  • 1. At 12:31pm on 30 Sep 2008, stopthepress wrote:

    ...and another post about money...

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  • 2. At 12:37pm on 30 Sep 2008, babyfacedassasin2 wrote:

    Mihir, i often see you getting a lot of stick from people, however i feel this is unwarranted on this occasion. That was an interesting piece on Spurs and answered a few questions i had about who actually owns Spurs and the workings of their management. So i thought it was only fair you get good remarks with the bad!!

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  • 3. At 12:40pm on 30 Sep 2008, Hi my name is Troy McClure wrote:

    "Levy's deal-making skills may be legendary, and feared by the rest of the Premier League, but failure to translate this on the field of play means Tottenham may be condemned to remain a club where the playing record does not match the financial results"

    LOL, one of the funniest things I have read for ages. Mihir you are a legend and I for one hope you get your own TV programme.

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  • 4. At 12:47pm on 30 Sep 2008, AndyPlowright wrote:

    Mihir, this article seems a lot less critical of Spurs than your recent piece on Arsenal. I'm neutral, I don't support either team, but this article seems to be applauding Daniel Levy. A side that has sacked a decent manager and seems to be sliding around between 'average' and 'useless' in terms of onfield performance doesn't sound like something particularly praiseworthy to me.

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  • 5. At 12:48pm on 30 Sep 2008, jedibond wrote:

    Thought provoking article there and as alreay stated, answered some questions I had about who owns what. It would be very interesting to see who won any bidding war and what the final price was.

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  • 6. At 12:56pm on 30 Sep 2008, john westwood wrote:

    As a former season ticket holder at Spurs I am pleased that I declined to renew this season despite the modest inflation beating rise of "only 11%", after last seasons abject displays post the Carling Cup the team have if nothing else been consistantly bad. I am convinced that Lewis needs to sell, to take a bath on Bear Stearns of £400 million, even if you are supposed to be worth 2 billion would cause serious grief.....I also think that his predicament was responsible for breaking up a good team and selling the best players...not a good move in such a fiercely competitative league, how much will Spurs be worth as a Championship Club?

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  • 7. At 1:00pm on 30 Sep 2008, Arsenal_Almere wrote:

    Of course this article is less critical than the Arsenal article from last week. That's what happens when you get a self-confessed Spurs fan to write an article.

    Very impartial there BBC!

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  • 8. At 1:04pm on 30 Sep 2008, manredsox wrote:

    Mihir - you mention that TH have a current stock market valuation of £350m, but a "fair value" more like £400m, do you by any chance own some TH stock?!

    If a banking expert said the same thing about a well-known (and listed) bank he'd be accused of insider trading!

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  • 9. At 1:08pm on 30 Sep 2008, sihowells wrote:

    "The club are about to announce very good set of results for the year ending in June."

    How do you know this, Mr. Bose?

    Does this mean that somebody has broken the purdah required before a publicly quoted company publishes its annual results?

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  • 10. At 1:29pm on 30 Sep 2008, smoziwo wrote:

    Let's be fair about one thing, though. You can't blame Levy or Spurs for Frank Arnesen only lasting a season.

    He was poached by Chelsea because they thought he was doing a good job.

    And with hindsight, compared to the utter ineptitude of Damien Comolli, I guess he was.

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  • 11. At 1:30pm on 30 Sep 2008, richard crisford wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 12. At 1:32pm on 30 Sep 2008, mastermesmerize wrote:


    You seem to think that just because Levy knows the financial merry go round he is an honest caring key holder at THFC.

    Alan Sugar before him was very similar and I shudder to think hat an Asian billionaire fro Singapore would have to offer that would make THFC a football club again.

    It would be the same old story, except that, like Man City, they would attract players who love fat wallets.

    Levy is a good business man but he needs to look at a different market where he doesn't mess up peoples emotions with his wheeler dealing.

    Alan Sugar called the fans cum, he called Terry Venables scum and he hightailed it when he got the right offer. The poor oul fans still called him a saviour. Some Saviour ! £100m richer.

    Levy will do the same and say he wanted to hand over the reins to someone with a genuine interest in THFC. An Asian Tycoon .

    The fans will say we will finish forth next season.

    Keith Burkenshaw was right when he stood across Tottenham High Road the night they won the UEFA Cup and his last game.

    Quote - 'There used to be a Football Club' over there.

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  • 13. At 1:33pm on 30 Sep 2008, mastermesmerize wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 14. At 1:35pm on 30 Sep 2008, mastermesmerize wrote:


    You seem to think that just because Levy knows the financial merry go round he is an honest caring key holder at THFC.

    Alan Sugar before him was very similar and I shudder to think hat an Asian billionaire fro Singapore would have to offer that would make THFC a football club again.

    It would be the same old story, except that, like Man City, they would attract players who love fat wallets.

    Levy is a good business man but he needs to look at a different market where he doesn't mess up people's emotions with his wheeler dealing.

    Alan Sugar called the fans scum, he called Terry Venables scum and he hightailed it when he got the right offer. The poor oul fans still called him a saviour. Some Saviour ! £100m richer.

    Levy will do the same and say he wanted to hand over the reins to someone with a genuine interest in THFC. An Asian Tycoon .

    The fans will say we will finish fourth next season.

    Keith Burkenshaw was right when he stood across Tottenham High Road the night they won the UEFA Cup and his last game and said to a reporter.

    Quote - 'There used to be a Football Club' over there.

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  • 15. At 2:01pm on 30 Sep 2008, Cape Town Spur wrote:

    I heard a South African group wanted to buy Newcastle Utd. Any chance that it was Tottenham they looking into. Must agree that it has always been about the money and not the glory for Spurs for last 20 odd years. 50 million in the bank does not win you the premiership Mr. Levy.

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  • 16. At 2:05pm on 30 Sep 2008, RetiredNo6 wrote:


    I didn't think your Arsenal related blog was as anti-Arsenal as some, although I did feel that you took an overly doom mongerish look at the figures.

    Then here we get a blog aboput Spurs finances where it claims "plans are well advanced for a new, redeveloped stadium at White Hart Lane."

    Is that true? There is no firm evidence that it is.

    There, in fact, are large question marks about whether Spurs can afford such a redevelopment, and they are yet to muster any sort of serious proposal for what they do during the two year redevlopment period.

    To take such as positive approach when discussing that particular issue surrounding Spurs finances when you wanted to pick at a very small hole in the Arsenal business model does, I'm afraid, call your impartiality into question.

    I gave you the benefit of the doubt last week Mihir, but I'm afraid I'm unable to do so again.

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  • 17. At 2:05pm on 30 Sep 2008, boomshakalak wrote:

    great article Mihir... following on from your article (that was slammed on the comments by the way if you didn't read them) about "someone ... whose name i don't know... might want to buy Everton" you have come up with the genius "someone.. whose name i don't know... might want to buy Tottenham"... let me guess the coming weeks could bring us the set of great articles of our time such as "someone.. whose name i dont know.. may want to buy XXXX"

    but to add comment on your article... I don't think Levy is the worst chairman either... but he can't claim that he has done anything great at spurs and is arguably as big a problem to them by sacking good managers without giving them chance to succeed as he is by selling their better players to "make a profit"

    Mihir - despite me having a pop at you it is just because i am jealous - you have an amazing job - and must have amazing contacts in the game.... please write an article that is based on something other than "unnamed person may want to buy a premier league club".... you are in a great position to write something great.. get hold of something really meaty... don't sit on the fence ... and let us have it both barrells!

    good luck - i await your next article!

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  • 18. At 2:33pm on 30 Sep 2008, Hi my name is Troy McClure wrote:

    'good luck - i await your next article'!

    For Christ's sake don't encourage him

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  • 19. At 2:34pm on 30 Sep 2008, boomshakalak wrote:

    9. - bang on mate!

    Mihir - are you involved in inside trading knowledge? shall we all rush out and buy shares in THFC given that the results are going to be good?

    following on from my post earlier please can you write your next article on "the illegal coallition between the BBC and THFC regarding financial performance"... i can't wait to read it!

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  • 20. At 2:48pm on 30 Sep 2008, boomshakalak wrote:

    unbelievable... as i wrote my last comment... Mihir has produced another piece of journalistic genius... the same type of article about Newcastel... i kid ye not!... check it out...

    Mihir - i love you!... brilliant!

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  • 21. At 2:51pm on 30 Sep 2008, jhfgdsaw wrote:

    i bet a pound to a penny he never reads the comments

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  • 22. At 2:54pm on 30 Sep 2008, fallsheroes wrote:

    Of course Spuds are doing well financially! Think of all those mugs they must have sold when they beat Arsenal and chelski to win the Carling Cup!

    duuhhhh dont you lot know anything about business!

    (expect Hull to do the same thing...oh wait...their not money grabbing leaches)

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  • 23. At 2:55pm on 30 Sep 2008, Poppen wrote:

    Long and lucrative contracts in any walk of life induce complacency. Short contracts mean you're out if your performance is below scratch. The Sol Cambell experience which Spurs endured has created muddled thinking in the Spurs hierachy. Now all the first team players are on lucrative contracts and it shows on the field.
    Is it not ironic that all the ex-Spurs players at different clubs are performing much better than they did at Spurs?
    Whichever way one looks at the situation at the club the poor performances are down to the Manager's tactics and it appears that Ramos falls short in this area.
    Spurs have always leaked goals but often scored more against the opposition.
    Now we are so afraid to leak goals that we think that one striker on the field is sufficient. This works only with the long ball game.
    Let's get back to what we have always been good at...........scoring more goals and leaking a few! At least we get our value for the high entry fees.
    Let's grab Alan Curbishley while he's available and stop the influx of foreign managers from making us into the most dire and frusting club to watch.
    It would be bad business to buy a clum entrenched at the bottom of the Premier League. £ must be joking!

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  • 24. At 3:15pm on 30 Sep 2008, The Kid wrote:

    Thank you for writing this. It gives me some renenwed hope as a Spurs fan that even if we continue the bad form and get relegated new ownership and maybe new management will ensure that at least a new direction would be be sought or undertaken soon after. Futhermore, reinforcing that they are an attractive buy for any businessman is reassuring

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  • 25. At 3:32pm on 30 Sep 2008, arthur blundell wrote:

    I Don't think a new owner is going to do very much for us at the moment, we've spent enough money badly this summer. In fact Spurs have proved that a director of football just does not work, Commolli has bought so much rubbish although I daressay this summers rubbish only came with a nod from Ramos. I Think the scribe above is right, give Curbishley a contract until the end of the season with promise of another one if he keeps the club up.

    No I think a new owner is not so important as a new manager, the current one has not got a clue and only won I think 30 percent of his league games.

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  • 26. At 3:48pm on 30 Sep 2008, Ritesh80 wrote:

    Another piece that is wasting my licence fee. All this article does is try to bring hope to a club that is rock bottom and cannot attract the best talent in the world to it despite being the most over hyped thing since sliced bread.

    The problem with Tottenham is that the fans are conditioned by the board that they are the best ever and when the cups and leagues don't come, they want change. They get change and the same thing happens.

    The club feeds pieces to the media that Spurs are going to sign a superstar, season tickets sell, and all that happens is that a player moves hence why they report good profits.

    They would be mad to get rid of Ramos in the same way they were mad to get rid of Jol. But we all know that it's going to happen.

    When will there be a critique of the way that Spurs is being run Mihir?

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  • 27. At 3:49pm on 30 Sep 2008, Roger_the_Pessimist wrote:

    21 - would you???

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  • 28. At 4:40pm on 30 Sep 2008, bossman1458 wrote:

    The majority of you readers are like demented sheep who just copy each others comments...lets all have a go at Mihir! Sad...very sad. If you look at the article and use that strained single brain cell to actually understand it you'll see that it makes very good sense...of course Levy is an excellent businessman...20M for Robbie Keane??? Excellent business..and thats coming from a Liverpool fan. He also got what he wanted from the Berbatov sale...again excellent business...and thats partly why the financial results will be good...not because of inside trading/knowledge as some of you dimwits suggest...for god sake its there for all to see...£50M plus for two players...he did very well. And one more thing, Tottenham won't go down, they had many new faces come in and it'll take time, but when they gel they'll be ok. Well done Mihir, keep up the great work...unfortunately many of your readers can't actually understand simple English and are too busy jumping on the bandwagon...maybe they feel smarter in packs rather than using their own intelligence and assessing your interesting and thought provoking articles.

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  • 29. At 4:47pm on 30 Sep 2008, DougCoglan wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 30. At 5:18pm on 30 Sep 2008, mancspur32 wrote:

    An example, from a fan / shareholder of how Daniel Levy has 'run a successful business':

    During the 2006-7 season, Spurs finished 5th in the Premiership, reached a semi-final and two other quarter-finals in cup competitions, all of which generated an annual profit of more than £25 million ... which was then spent on Darren Bent and Younes Kaboul!

    No doubt Levy will display similar acumen when he invests the £400 million he expects Enic to make from the sale of the club?

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  • 31. At 5:37pm on 30 Sep 2008, SeanPF wrote:

    I think people criticise these articles way too quickly and just jump on the bandwagon. Mihir,as head of sport, obviously has far more inside knowledge of the football world than any of us so why do people continue to say 'this is a rubbish article'?

    Is a football fan not able then, according to some posters, to write an objective article on his own team? I could write a stinging attack on my football team, not everyone has positive views on their own team.

    Even when he gives us new info this is just brushed off as, basically, made up. 'Where is the info from? etc'. I think its very unfair on him and people should try reading the article more closely. Clearly he is talking about the fine balancing act here between running a profitable club and being a good football TEAM that Spurs have yet to find.

    Grow up and respect the guy for god's sake! I dread to think of some of the article's we might get frm ths ppl who tlk in txct spk n cn hrdly pt a sntence 2geva

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  • 32. At 5:57pm on 30 Sep 2008, Hooplar wrote:

    To you jokers talking about "good results", maybe you should do some research on what you're talking about before you say it.

    A company can have good results and the share price falls; results can be poor but the share price rises.

    What matters is not whether the results are "good" or "bad", but where they come relative to the market's expectations.

    If the market expects good results but they turn out to be not quite as good as was expected (but still "good" results, relative to Arsenal's results for example) then the share price will fall despite the results.

    Good article.

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  • 33. At 6:22pm on 30 Sep 2008, Arctic wrote:

    I've got no problem with people being critical about what someone writes, but when the sum of their arguments appear to be "I don't like anything you write, please stop doing it" I have to laugh.

    You have a choice, which is to stop reading them. You have every right to read and disagree. You have every right to object to speculation and put forward your own ideas.

    But if you're simply getting angry because of who's writing the blog or the article, get a life. Read the blogs and articles you're interested in and leave the rest alone.

    The title gives a bit of a clue as to what the piece is about. If it isn't something you want to read, don't read it. Particularly don't read it if you're just going to get angry and upset with the subject as opposed to the content.

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  • 34. At 8:01pm on 30 Sep 2008, JP1960 wrote:

    adds absolutely nothing new to the debate except for some wild speculation about profitability and a wild guess at 'fair value' of the business.. is this investigative financial journalism at its best? stick to your anti Arsenal theme, at least that gives us a laugh..

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  • 35. At 8:09pm on 30 Sep 2008, JP1960 wrote:

    and how exactly the Tottenham board can be lauded is an absolute joke.. they only made a substantial profit last year on the sale of players as they may do this year too.. in the meantime it would seem that the only way forward for their business model is to sell so that another idiot will take over the expense and risk of rebuilding their stadium.. they are having trouble even getting their training facilities off the ground and this despite borrowing 75m for which is incidentally a point you'd think Bose would make in an article like this.. instead its more just a PR excercise for his club and hopefully he'll be invited along a few more times to their boardroom.. you're a fake Bose as we have always known..

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  • 36. At 9:13pm on 30 Sep 2008, BigJF10 wrote:

    Does anyone know much about Commoli?

    I've heard bits and pieces about Jol and Juande asking for certain players and getting something completely different. He seems to think he knows better than the managers and is, in comedy terms, 'doing his own material'.

    Even then, the players he does go after don't seem to be up to much.

    When you have a board that like to sell winners to make a few quid, and a chancer replacing them with weaker players, you're not going to get very far are you?

    I know we're not Man Utd but surely sooner or later we need to hold on to the likes of Berbatov, Keane even Carrick (like Utd did when they put their foot down with Ronaldo) or we'll just end up with the likes of Jenas, Bent, Dawson and people noone else wants, swanning round the mid-table every year.

    Put it this way, we didn't do too well last year, and then they sold our best players, genius.

    I think Levy is a good guy and has our best interests at heart, but the so-called football people advising him need changing.

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  • 37. At 10:12pm on 30 Sep 2008, haringeys flyest rudebwoy wrote:

    It's not fair to say that Tottenham do not have the financial position to refuse offers for players like Berbatov, Keane, and Carrick. I think that, in all cases, if the price is right, then the sale of a player is warranted, even in the case of Man Utd selling Ronaldo or Liverpool selling Torres.

    If we look at the case of Carrick, for example, we bought the player for just 2.75m pounds. He had two good seasons for us and then went to Man Utd for 20m, so we got a huge profit, as well as two great seasons in which he helped us to top five; furthermore, he was two years older once he went to Man Utd. I think that for any club, it should be an instant decision to sell a defensive midfielder, or a player who wins the ball back for your team, for such an exorbitant price. That 20m was then reinvested, and the plan was that this cycle could continue.

    It's also not fair at all to call players like Jenas, Bent, and Dawson "players that no one else wants" (BigJF10). Spurs have a great tradition of bringing in the best young British talent, and at the time that these players were bought, they were all thought to be able to break into the English national first team and, in fact, Jenas is in the first team and Bent has been in many England squads in the recent past. I don't think you would find many who would say that Carrick is much better than Jenas; I, for one, would much sooner have Jenas in the starting lineup than Carrick.

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  • 38. At 10:54pm on 30 Sep 2008, tobyrei wrote:

    Good article but doesn't go nearly far enough in its analysis of Levy's role in the club's sorry state. The club may be a business but footballing-wise it is a laughing stock. Levy simply fails to understand that a consistent, winning team on the pitch is what the fans want. He has now two seasons running left his manager high and dry whilst chasing the dollars in his latest deal. And is it just me or does Levy seem to make sure that there are always lots of comings and goings at the club? Is it possible thaty this turn-over is really where a ll the money is to be made. He must go NOW and must be replaced by a chairmen who understands football.

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  • 39. At 11:04pm on 30 Sep 2008, frozenis wrote:

    To all those who constantly seem to berate this particular author: there's a reason as to why Mihir Bose is the BBC Sports Editor. If you think you could do better, why not apply for a job there?

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  • 40. At 11:10pm on 30 Sep 2008, BigJF10 wrote:

    The selling players for high prices and regenerating by buying promising players for lower prices is a great idea, but it needs to be working before you rely on it.

    (what did the Carrick money get us? Tainio? Prince-Boateng? Ghaly?)

    I agree, most clubs can sell good players if the price is right, but I think we're presently in a strange bracket that means we must always hold on to them, because we're not likely to get them again.

    I doubt we'll get another Robbie Keane or Dimitar Berbatov any time soon, so what good has selling them done? We'll probably spend their transfer money twice over going through a series of affordable, promising, but ultimately unsucessful alternatives.

    Its all about winning games isn't it? Surely thats the best way for a club to be in a financially succesful position long-term?

    For the record, I wasn't calling Bent, Dawson and Jenas players no one else wants, (although we have a few) I'm just saying they aren't good enough if we're supposeed to be challenging for the Champions League: Dawson is no Terry, Jenas is no Gerrard and Bent is no Berbatov.

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  • 41. At 11:49pm on 30 Sep 2008, stopthepress wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 42. At 02:13am on 01 Oct 2008, RVP1968 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 43. At 07:56am on 01 Oct 2008, sihowells wrote:

    @frozenis -

    "There's a reason as to why Mihir Bose is the BBC Sports Editor."

    Can you expand upon that reason, please?

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  • 44. At 08:16am on 01 Oct 2008, docherty wrote:

    I Don't think the Arsenal blog was questioning the success of the team, just the financing of Emirates and the change in the current climate. Tottenham paradoxically have been well run financially but diabolically as a football team. I don't think money is Tottenhams immediate worry because anyone at the club who has had the power to spend the money, inevitably spends it badly. No, someone buying the club for 300/400m isn't going to solve the playing problems. Financing the playing side of things works best a-la Man U, Arsenal or other clubs where the manager fingers a player and then taps up the Chairman to provide the cash. Both Jol and Ramos have ended up with players that Commolli wants but they appear not to !!

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  • 45. At 08:46am on 01 Oct 2008, mwalmi wrote:

    Mihir, thanks for your comments.
    As a spurs supporter I could not agree more. Spurs is a business and profit is all that matters. You can either make a profit by winning leagues and trophies or by buying and selling players. Spurs chose to do it the easy way. Buy a cheap, young player and sell him for a profit. As long as Spurs choose to go this route they will be an average, mid table team. That is why the football director is so important at spurs. Commolli will loose his job before Ramos.

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  • 46. At 08:54am on 01 Oct 2008, EuroPaddy wrote:

    Mihir, I quote your tag line:

    "I'm Mihir Bose, the BBC's sports editor. This blog is my regular take on the key sports stories and issues behind the headlines. "

    This article is neither a key sports story nor a headline. It is a piece of speculation from someone who it seems is struggling to make his quota. This is not what I would expect to read from "The BBCs Sports Editor". How many more times are you going to publish guesswork about premiership clubs for sale, their estimated value (estimated by who - you?), interrested investors etc. I'm interrested in going in to space with Virgin Galactic, but that doesn't mean it's ever going to happen. I'm beginning to think you're Mystic Meg in disguise.

    Please stick to the facts, or at least tell us why you reach your conclusions. And stop repeating the same story over and over again with different football clubs - it's very annoying.

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  • 47. At 09:25am on 01 Oct 2008, EuroPaddy wrote:

    Uy, I just re-read my last comment, and it looks a bit menopausal - sorry about that.

    But I stick with the remarks...

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  • 48. At 10:41am on 01 Oct 2008, Addick Simmo wrote:

    I think it is high time that Spurs realised they are just another mid table premiership club and will never be in the big four.
    They may get 35,000 plus gates ,but they continually fail to achieve anything and the signings the club have made in recent years are average to say the least.
    It;s about time that the Spurs loving press told it like it was instead of building an at best average club intio premier league winners
    Get a life...........It's almost 50 years since Spurs were big.Burnley won the league in 1960.Their supporters don't harp on about what a big club they are.

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  • 49. At 10:45am on 01 Oct 2008, bossman1458 wrote:

    This comment has been referred for further consideration. Explain

  • 50. At 10:48am on 01 Oct 2008, ea1983 wrote:

    Same old same old. Please stop rehashing articles. Tim Vickery has the blog and Gavin Strachen has then potential to have a great blog. Please write something that fresh and informative like the other two do a weekly basis.

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  • 51. At 11:21am on 01 Oct 2008, mikeg13 wrote:

    Love Mr Bose's articles, wonder if he managed to keep a straight face when writing it.
    So Spurs are about to release good figures, Stadium is on the horizon, with no reference to any supporting facts. What does he base it on, a wish and prayer, how about comparing Afc finances with Spurs in his next work of fiction.

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  • 52. At 11:37am on 01 Oct 2008, aknightly wrote:

    Yet again,

    Full of old news, rumour and what everybody already knows about spurs - no ambition and are a selling that are only interested in profit.

    The owners have no idea about football or otherwise they would have kept Jol. He was the best thing to have happened to that club for a long time. He had the respect of the fans and the players but 5th wasn't good enough for the board.

    The only piece of interest in this "blog", if that is what we must call this article, is the part about Mr Lewis. But if I wanted to know about him then I would have looked him up on Wikipedia!

    This article is just like Tottenham - boring and run out of ideas.

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  • 53. At 11:55am on 01 Oct 2008, Theonelikefranco wrote:

    Geeeez, some of you guys are crazy.

    I dont know whether I'm just making excuses for spurs and my glasses are well and truly rose tinted, or whether the rest of you are blinkered to single points - your brains incaple of putting things in context.

    Levy is a great businessman, and he's tried various things to make the club work too.

    Hired Goddle, hoping the messiah would do the business.......didnt work.

    Waited it out (which a lot of fans disagreed with) and brought in Santini who was a proven manager with nuff experience developing youngsters. He brings in Jol as coach which was a brilliant choice.

    Santini bottles it, Jol steps in and bosses things, nearly gets us into Champs league (if it wernt for that last game), gives us some of our best finishes in decades breaking European records along the way and more importantly, playing young exciting players and attractive football.

    Spurs get hyped all summer long by THE MEDIA which somehow gets translated into the FANS over-hyping ourselves. Spurs start badly - the newspaperspapers circle spurs like vultures because Arsenal (who they all saw as prey pre-season) were currently top of the league and rinsing it. Fans cant handle it, players bottle it, Levi sacks Jol to stop the rot. (I still cant forgive how we went about sacking Jol)

    We get Ramos - hot property at the time. He wins us the Carling cup, and we generally look better than at the start of the season. Then in the summer we lose our strikeforce and we find ourselves in this situation.

    Now I dont think Levy has been brilliant in all his decisions. However I think the media has forced a lot of decisions because basically the media opinion = fans opinion a lot of the time. Pressure builds on Levy and he has to make the best of a bad situation.

    When we had Defoe, Keane, Berbs the papers always wrote stories about either Keane or Defoe not playing. Does this happen at Liverpool with Kuyt/Voronin/Torres? Chelsea with Anelka/Drogba? Does anyone mention the Man u midfield when Carrick or Hardgreaves dont play.

    So, Levy has not delivered as we'd have hoped so far. However, his ideas have been good, if not carried out perfectly and not 100% successfully.

    But then spurs fans wont count anything as success until we win the league and Europe. Which doesnt look likely for a while.

    We're gonna beat Hull, then slowly make our way up the league. Modric will come good, as will Bent, Pav and Dos Santos.

    As for Asian investors.......they aint welcome.

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  • 54. At 12:18pm on 01 Oct 2008, unitedfergie wrote:

    Isn't it clear that Spurs problems stem from Daniel Levy? He was reported as having approached Ramos whilst Jol was still in charge and upsetting Sevilla (sound familiar re Berb?);he also played brinksmanship in selling Berb at the last minute - almost literally - allowing no opportunity to find a replacement. Ramos has good cause to feel aggrieved that he's now carrying the can

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  • 55. At 4:23pm on 01 Oct 2008, frozenis wrote:

    It amuses me that many here cannot comprehend the link between sport (let's say football, for instance), money and politics.

    Football and money are inter-related. Football, as a business or professional sport, cannot run without money. And money, the sole raison d'etre for any business, cannot be made without a specific industry (in this case football).

    As for politics? Well, let me be the first to inform you that a famous man once said that: "Politics is everywhere..." I think he just might be right.

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  • 56. At 5:59pm on 01 Oct 2008, Quiraing wrote:

    In this club for sale series there is a generic key piece of analysis missing ie the short to medium term outlook for maintaining TV premiership contract revenue globally in a world where economic growth and hence TV advertising demand might contract sharply. For that matter are the current TV suppliers in a short term position to actually have the cash in a 'safe' bank to fulfil their existing Premiership payment obligations or could all the Premiership clubs be forced into administrtation at once? Within the UK you could speculate on the effects of say a modest 25% pub subscription reduction and a 15% at home subscription reduction within 9 months.We know ITV are shrinking(recent news cuts) is the BBC likely to renew their contract??How about a feature on trend of Premiership/Football crowd figures and ticket price reductions especially at those clubs for sale?

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  • 57. At 5:43pm on 03 Oct 2008, Nick wrote:


    From the Arsenal article you wrote "As widely expected, the club has done well. Last season may have been trophyless but the club earned £223m. Much of this was from the new television deal, bringing in nearly £69m,"

    Now reading your article and with you saying "This could see profits climb to about £30m and turnover rise to £115m, with the increases due to Spurs' Carling Cup victory and higher income from the new Sky-Setanta Premier League television deal."

    Does this mean that without the new TV deal that had come in Spurs would have made a loss for the year!!?

    I'd love to see you do a comparison of both sets of figures when Spurs come out. How can you say Levy is a good chairman when he goes tapping up managers and then moans when it happens to me!! I don't think that's very professional.

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