Champion's League? You're Having a Laugh

I was involved in an interesting conversation with a few colleagues of mine this morning.

Included in the group of football wannabe pundits, were Spurs, Arsenal, Liverpool, Villa and one recently baptised Manchester City fan. We were discussing the teams chasing the fourth, majestic Champion's League spot.

The majority of the office is confident that Spurs can finish in the top four, with Liverpool finishing the season in fifth and City in sixth.

What I did find interesting, wasn't the fact that the majority thought that we could make the Champion's League, but that Tottenham Hotspur could be on the verge of a one-time affair with the lucrative competition.

Let's face up to the facts. Sooner or later, Manchester City are going to get it right. With the money they've got, they can and will buy the league.

If we make the Champion's League and that's a mighty big "if", I believe that it will transform us as a club. We will be able to sign a calibre of player that wouldn't have been available to us previously. Therefore, if we are to cement our place in the Champion's League, year in, year out, we need to invest. Maybe investment isn't the only key ingredient? Hope that we can evolve faster than the chasing pack is also vital.

Everton's Champion's League exhibition didn't bode well for them. Instead of making a real go of it, they went out in the qualifying rounds; qualifying rounds that have somewhat become harder in recent seasons.

Whether or not they decided they had the squad to compete, or simply didn't have the funds to invest, is anyone's guess. What is fact is that the route they took proved that the team they had back then wasn't good enough to compete for the top four position year on year.

Manchester City isn’t the only club we should be worried about. We've also got Liverpool to think of too. They are a sleeping giant, one that, once fully awake, will cause damage.

As things stand, Liverpool need some heavy investment and that could take a while, especially with the internal problems that keep erupting in the boardroom. As well as a new team, as Torres keeps alluding to, they need a new stadium. If reports of them bringing in Jose Mourinho are to be trusted, they will need to fork out some serious dough. The man doesn't come cheap. He's reported to be on £9 million net at Inter Milan. If you take into account the 50% tax scheme that's about to come into play, we're talking £18 million a year! If you get him on a 5 year deal, that's £90 million (plus additional bonuses).

There's no doubting he'd want a few world-class players to, which could mean a further outlay. How much would a few world-class players cost? City spent over £200 million on a group of players that I personally wouldn't call all world-class. Then we come to the stadium issue. That's another £400+ million. All in all, Liverpool could need an investment of near on £1 billion. Football doesn't come cheap, does it?

Aston Villa is also a slumbering giant, one that with the right playing squad could be in the position we're currently in. For them to push on any further, they to would need drastic investment, which, their owner, Mr. Lerner has said won't be forthcoming any time soon.

Therefore, if we are going to make the Champion's League and stay there, we need to reassess some issues in relation to the playing staff. Let's hope the board is game.

Of course, we have to get there first. Who else will become a Wigan Athletic fan tonight? I know I will.





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