A while ago I was asked by a friend why anyone would want to buy a football club. Their argument was something of the lines that: there is no way they will make any money back, and at best will just loose some of their cash and not a lot, why would anyone do this? I was dismayed at the lack of logic applied to the concept – if there is anyone who has, in the current climate, bought a football club to make money, then more fool them, as not only is that unlikely, it’s probably impossible. The reason for this are pretty obvious, namely being the amount of money involved in being in a club offset at where you get your income from are never going to equate, nor tip, in the direction that you want it to.

And thinking of a football club as a business is a bad idea too. Just because they “make” money and then “spend” it, that does not a business make. They are more akin to a motion picture, or a band – football is entertainment more than anything these days, almost played out like the aging WWE (formally known as the WWF to my generation). The way to think about owning a football club is the same as thinking about owning a computer games console.

You spent £250+ on the console because you wanted to play the computer games, and then every so often you have to buy a computer game. It’s an extra outlay that makes you happy and fulfils the basic purchase. This is the same as football clubs, as the owner should be of a comparative wealth. For example, the £250 for a games console represents a percentage of my salary that I am willing to give up and this is the same as the owner of a football club. You spend that money to gain enjoyment back from it and that is where the value should come from. You don’t expect to make any money from the console and the games; indeed to think that possible would be ridiculous. And as such, this is the same with owners of football clubs.

Another way of looking at it is like betting. If you are like me, you go out to loose money when you go to the casino, or when you play poker. You set it up in your mind so that you have already spent the money when you start playing, so that if you do win it back, you not only feel better about it, it balances out. You will never enjoy a game of black jack, texas holdem, nor a game of roulette if you expect to earn any money back because the odds are stacked against you. If they weren’t, then the casino wouldn’t exactly be a good business now would it?