I hate to see my team losing and I hate to see my team fail in the transfer market. I mean, come on, we need a striker and a centre-back and we’ve needed a striker and a centre-back for a couple years. How hard can it be? Right? Gabriel didn’t do too bad but there’s rumors he still doesn’t know English and–even though he played well before–he was sent off in a vital match against Chelsea.
It honestly got me thinking why clubs buy certain players. There have certainly been some insane buys in the banter-era of Arsenal and the post-Fergie-era of Man U and now, even the likes of West Ham, Crystal Palace, and Liverpool are buying players for insane amounts. With the transfer market in full swing, let’s look at why clubs decide to purchase certain individuals over others:
The country they’re from
There are people that do not understand the Homegrown rule. And for those dummies, it’s as simple as this: players who are 21 years or older and have played through the “English leagues system”.
That is eight players who turned the minimum age of 21 years before January 1 of the corresponding Premier League season in which he is to play a part.
This could help explain why Raheem Sterling was signed for £49 million at the age of 20; he could fill a HG spot while simultaneously competing for a spot in the first team. Obviously, and miraculously, he played in over 30 games for Manchester City, so he was almost a regular in the first team roster.
However, his underwhelming outings mean that Sterling is the English media’s new favorite scapegoat. This Euro competition couldn’t have come at a worst time for Mr. Sterling, because as the best English talent since Jackie boy Wilshere some millions of years ago, if Raheem did well, he was living up to it, if he didn’t, he was failing the country (to be clear, I think he failed the country and is absolutely nicking a living).
But anyway, apart from his awful performances in the Euros, he’s given Manchester City a ton of media attention and as the sport needs the attention in the States–this isn’t a bad thing.
Man City probably wouldn’t have bought Sterling if he wasn’t English, in my opinion, and there are some more transfers that happen strictly because of the player’s nationality and the market associated with it.
How young a player is
This one makes sense because to prepare for the future clubs need to buy younger players. Arsenal are famous for this. In the past they’ve bought Anelka and moved him on in the next few seasons–the profits built a new training ground. In the not-so-distant past Arsenal have brought in players like Calum Chambers, Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Walcott. These aren’t only good, young, talented players, but also English–meaning they can fill the Homegrown players’ quota.
Manchester United are also well-known for their pursuit of young and gifted players. Wayne Rooney is the example for the ages, while in more recent times the acquisition of Anthony Martial and Depay have grabbed a lot of attention. It seems that teams want to be a part of the hype surrounding these young, electric players. I mean, come on, Real Madrid bought a 15-year old Norwegian kid last summer.
How they perform in a major tournament
I had never heard of James Rodriguez before the World Cup in 2014, and he was bought by Monaco before that competition for something in the region of €45 million. Now, he’s a superstar because of his performances at the tournament. This rationale–how a player performs on the biggest stage–goes hand in hand with ‘how famous they are’. It happens time and again; a big, major club swoops in and buys one of the best players of an international tournament.
Arsenal bought Andrey Arshavin right after the 2008 European Championships, and Davor Suker is another notable name who landed a big transfer after his World Cup heroics. It will be interesting to see what big money transfers happen after these Euros.
Obviously there are many more reasons why teams acquire players, but from a purely business standpoint, teams need to sell shirts and stay relevant and these are a few ways in which they do it.