Neymar, Pogba and the rise of ‘The Unsellables’

first_imgWages and transfer fees at the top end of the game grow ever higher. In the case of certain players, it means their options are severely restricted when it comes to their next destination. In other cases, clubs simply cannot find another employer to pay the transfer fee and wages for players they no longer want on their books.There are some unhappy players out there at big clubs who might well want to move on before this summer’s transfer window is over. In this category, Neymar is the most obvious example. It is no secret that the uneasy marriage between the Brazil No.10 and Paris Saint-Germain could well be coming to an end. However, there could yet be an impasse.While PSG would probably settle for their money back – some €222m – there are not many clubs out there willing or able to furnish that outlay. Barcelona would be one interested party but will need to make room in the budget for the transfer fee and wages. Besides, they have other transfer priorities to work upon, with Antoine Griezmann now reckoned to be in the frame. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Neymar makes around €700,000 per week at Parc des Princes, meaning that only a very, very select few clubs can match his salary expectation. With the bases loaded at most top teams, as it were, there is simply nowhere else for him to go. If PSG cash in to the tune of €222m and Neymar earns the same at his next club as he currently does then that means an outlay of around €400m over the course of only a four-year contract.The size of PSG’s pay-packet had the double benefit of convincing Neymar to depart Barcelona for an inferior institution and guarding against rival bids from elsewhere, should Neymar decide to pack his bags. Once he recovers from injury, the only option he might have available to him is to wait it out another year when his transfer value will diminish in proportion to the time remaining on his contract and try again next summer.Paul Pogba, meanwhile, would appear to be in a hurry to leave Manchester United. His end-of-season promotional trip to Japan turned into a nightmare for his club once the France World Cup winner made it known that he would ideally seek a new challenge for next season.It will not be straightforward. The duration of Pogba’s contract – another three years should the club take up their one-year option – means the value of any transfer would exceed the €100m world record fee United paid to Juventus three years ago. Real Madrid could probably afford it – even allowing for their record-breaking summer thus far – but it is by no means guaranteed that they will go in for the 26-year-old. If Madrid or Juventus fail to be convinced, his only option would probably be to stay putOn the other hand, United are stuck in a bind with Alexis Sanchez. Perhaps the most damaging signing of the Jose Mourinho reign, Sanchez’s reported near £600,000 weekly wage has distorted the salary picture inside the club and made it a hell of a lot more difficult to tie existing talents like Marcus Rashford to new deals.Neymar Brazil Qatar Friendly 05062019Paul Pogba Juventus Real MadridWhile United would want Rashford to commit to extended terms, he quite rightly can point to his own output compared to Sanchez in the year and a half they’ve been alongside one another. That’s one reason why United would happily accept any kind of deal for the Chilean.The problem comes with a very simple question: Who’s going to match that wage?Sanchez is well within his rights to work the terms of his contract should no suitable alternative materialise. And United? Well they would be stuck with the remnants of another Mourinho-Ed Woodward transfer botch.It’s a similar situation that Arsenal have got with Mesut Ozil. The indications are that Ozil is happy to stay in north London – and why wouldn’t he be for £350,000 a week? Arsenal, however, need space in their wage budget and – ideally – more money to improve the squad in the transfer market. But it’s not going to be easy to get those sums in any deal involving Ozil.Unai Emery showed last season he is no fan of Ozil and would happily dispense with him. The key obstruction – aside from his own inconsistent form – is the massive wage Ozil earns. Arsenal are stuck with a player they’d now rather not have with little in the way of a resolution anywhere on the horizon.Alexis Sanchez Manchester United 2018-19Gareth Bale, Zinedine Zidane, Real MadridMesut Ozil Arsenal Chelsea Europa League final 2019That dilemma will sound familiar to Real Madrid. They paid a world record sum to sign Gareth Bale but the Welshman has outgrown his purpose at Santiago Bernabeu. That fresh contract he signed in October 2016 weighs heavily though, with his transfer value still high and his wages – like Ozil’s – gargantuan.Real Madrid would dearly love to move him on and – despite his injury troubles – would feel entitled to recoup a good portion of the €100m transfer fee they paid to Tottenham six years ago. That is easier said than done.It is a consequence of the stockpiling of talent that has taken place at a select number of top clubs over the past few years. The stratification of talent and finances thanks to broadcast and commercial deals as well as reforms in competitions like the Champions League has brought about a sort of shadow Super League, which is already in play.Top talents are scarce, they cost a lot to sign and cost a lot to pay. And no one from outside that top band has a hope of getting one. For clubs it means more difficulty in getting them out the door and for players it means a lack of options.It is the likes of Real Madrid and Manchester United who are driving wages and transfer fees for that small band of players ever upward.And if anything goes wrong, they are stuck with an unhappy performer on their hands.last_img read more

The Latest Trump family members dining at 21 Club

Vice President Joe Biden speaks about sound financial sector regulation at Georgetown University in Washington, Monday, Dec. 5, 2016. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) WASHINGTON – The Latest on President-elect Donald Trump (all times EST):7:20 p.m.President-elect Donald Trump is having dinner at one of his favourite New York restaurants: 21 Club.Trump was dining Monday night with his wife, Melania, his three eldest children — Don Jr., Ivanka and Eric — as well as Ivanka’s husband, Jared Kushner.The president-elect ate at the same Midtown Manhattan restaurant last month but did not notify the press pool, the group of reporters and photographers who follow his movements.That drew criticism from the White House Correspondents Association and other journalist groups. The press pool did travel with Trump to the restaurant Monday and waited outside in a van while the president-elect ate.___4:40 p.m.Vice-President Joe Biden says that some of the economic proposals under discussion as a new administration prepares to enter the White House are the same ones that led to “this God-awful recession of eight years ago.”Speaking at Georgetown University on financial regulation, Biden says banks and other financial institutions knew they had a backstop in the form of the American taxpayer, so they took excessive risks. He says legislation designed to reduce such risk-taking should not be repealed.Biden also cites cutting the income tax rates for the wealthy, dramatically reducing the estate tax and “deregulation orthodoxy” as contributors to the recession.Biden praised steps taken early in Barack Obama’s presidency, adding that “while the people have spoken, we can’t be lulled into a sense of collective amnesia.”___4:10 p.m.Congressional Republicans may include in a must-pass government spending bill a provision aimed at accelerating the confirmation of retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis to be defence secretary.Capitol Hill aides say the measure, if it’s added, would essentially fast-track the legislative waiver required for President-elect Donald Trump’s pick to serve in the Pentagon’s top civilian post. A law prohibits an officer from leading the Defence Department before he has been out of the military for seven years. Mattis retired in 2013.The goal is to get a vote on the waiver legislation soon after lawmakers begin the 115th Congress in early January.Claude Chafin, a House Armed Services Committee spokesman, says there is no discussion about including the waiver for Mattis in the spending bill, known as a continuing resolution.He says what’s under consideration are the “procedures for how the waiver will be considered.”___3:30 p.m.President-elect Donald Trump is thanking supporters this week at rallies in a trio of battleground states.Aides to the Manhattan real estate magnate told reporters Monday that he’ll take breaks from interviewing candidates for his administration to hold evening rallies in states that helped him defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton in the Nov. 8 election.They say that after meeting with candidates Tuesday, Trump will hold an event in Fayetteville, North Carolina, followed by rallies Thursday in Des Moines, Iowa, and Friday in Grand Rapids, Michigan.In-between, Trump is holding meetings with candidates for secretary of state and other positions.___3 p.m.Sen. Joe Manchin says he had a “wide-ranging and constructive” conversation with President-elect Donald Trump last week and says he’s looking forward to talking to Trump again in a few days.The West Virginia Democrat says he’s a believer in setting aside “partisan politics to do what’s right” for his constituents.There’s been speculation that Manchin might be asked to join the incoming administration’s Cabinet.Manchin is up for re-election in 2018 and could face a challenging race since Trump carried West Virginia by 42 points last month. But he’s always had a strong political brand in the Mountaineer State and recently called himself a “born-in-the-wool West Virginia Democrat.”__2:25 p.m.The Rev. Jesse Jackson says it’s hard to know what Ben Carson’s nomination as Housing and Urban Development secretary means for the nation’s inner cities because Carson’s background as a surgeon is unrelated.President-elect Donald Trump says Carson is his pick to run the agency tasked with providing mortgage and loan insurance as well as state and local housing grants. If confirmed, the retired neurosurgeon would be in charge of federal programs for rental assistance and public housing to low-income families, the elderly and disabled.Jackson met with civil rights groups at the National Council of Negro Women building. They want Trump to meet with them to discuss urban policies, and to hold a White House conference on violence.___1:10 p.m.Former Vice-President Al Gore says he had a “productive” meeting with President-elect Donald Trump.Gore met with Trump at Trump Tower on Monday and spoke briefly to reporters afterward. He categorized his meeting as a “sincere search for common ground.”He also dubbed it “an extremely interesting conversation” but when asked what was discussed he only said “to be continued” before leaving.Gore says he also met with Ivanka Trump, the president-elect’s daughter. Transition officials said earlier Monday that the two would discuss climate change, which is Gore’s signature issue.The president-elect called man-made climate change a hoax and has pledged to undo a number of regulations to protect the environment.___12:45 p.m.The White House says progress in the United States’ relationship with China could be “undermined” if the issue of Taiwan’s sovereignty flares up.The comments from White House spokesman Josh Earnest follow President-elect Donald Trump’s phone call last week with Taiwan’s president.Earnest says Obama administration officials have been in touch with their Chinese counterparts to reiterate the U.S. support for the “One China” policy. The policy does not recognize Taiwan as a sovereign nation.Earnest says it’s “hard to determine” what Trump’s aims were in speaking to Taiwan’s leader. He also said it’s unclear whether it helps Taiwan if this issue is raised.___12:30 p.m.Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad is meeting with President-elect Donald Trump this week amid speculation he could become the next U.S. ambassador to China.Branstad told reporters Monday he has a tentative appointment to meet with Trump while the Republican governor is in New York for an economic development trip scheduled from Tuesday to Thursday.At a rally in Sioux City, Iowa, before the election, Trump had praised Branstad’s knowledge of trade and called him a “prime candidate to take care of China.”Branstad said Monday that Trump hasn’t offered him a position. Although Branstad didn’t directly reference becoming U.S. ambassador to China, he told reporters he’s had discussions recently with his family about possibly moving to China.Trump won Iowa and will hold a rally Thursday in Des Moines.__12:05 p.m.District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser is scheduled to meet with President-elect Donald Trump.LaToya Foster, a spokeswoman for Bowser, said the mayor will meet with Trump, at her request. Foster says the issues on the agenda are public safety, education, unemployment, infrastructure and D.C. statehood.Bowser, a Democrat, has noted that 93 per cent of District residents voted for candidates other than Trump, and that “some mending of relationships” is needed.Bowser skipped the highly publicized grand opening of Trump’s hotel.__11:40 a.m.House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy says imposing tariffs on companies that move their operations overseas could result in a trade war.President-elect Donald Trump said Sunday he’d impose a 35 per cent tax on companies that close U.S. factories, then relocate abroad and try to sell their products back to the United States.Republicans have long opposed such an approach, and it would likely need congressional approval.McCarthy tried to downplay suggestions that Trump’s proposal flew in the face of long-held GOP principles.But he said that comprehensive tax reform would be a better way of keeping companies and jobs in this country.“I think that’s a better way of solving the problem than getting into a trade war with a 35 per cent tariff,” the California Republican told reporters at the Capitol Monday.___11 a.m.Ivanka Trump is meeting with former Vice-President Al Gore, who is an aggressive advocate on the idea that humans are causing climate change.Ivanka Trump is a member of her father’s transition team, and aides told reporters Monday that the session would take place later in the day.President-elect Donald Trump said on the campaign trail that man-made climate change is a hoax. Gore told supporters of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton last month that Trump would walk away from international efforts to reduce carbon emissions.Ivanka Trump is viewed as being to the left of most Republicans on a range of issues, including climate change.___10:50 a.m.Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he is appreciative that Ben Carson is willing to take on the “challenging task” of leading the Department of Housing and Urban Development.In a statement released Monday, the Republican said the agency is in need of reform to “better serve all Americans.”McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, said of Carson: “I’m confident his lifelong career of selfless service will be a positive addition to the incoming administration.”President-elect Donald Trump announced his decision to tap Carson as HUD secretary on Monday.___10 a.m.House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi is calling Ben Carson a “disconcerting and disturbingly unqualified choice” to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development.Pelosi says the country deserves someone with “relevant experience” to protect the rights of homeowners and renters.In her statement released Monday, she says “there is no evidence that Dr. Carson brings the necessary credentials to hold a position with such immense responsibilities and impact on families and communities across America.”Trump says, “Ben shares my optimism about the future of our country and is part of ensuring that this is a presidency representing all Americans.”___8:59 a.m.Rep. Dana Rohrabacher claims he is under consideration to become the next secretary of state and says it’s “terrific” that President-elect Donald Trump flouted decades of U.S. diplomatic convention by speaking directly to the leader of Taiwan.Trump’s phone call irritated China, whose leaders consider Taiwan a rogue province. Trump defended the contact in a tweet and accused China of economic policies that Trump says hurt the U.S.Rohrabacher told Fox News on Monday that it’s not as though Trump violated any treaties.He said: “I think it was a terrific message to them that we’re no longer going to be pushovers, and there’s going to be consequences for their hostile and aggressive actions.”Rohrabacher is a California Republican known for his favourable views of Russia.___6:19 a.m.Donald Trump has chosen former campaign 2016 rival Ben Carson to become secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.Trump’s decision, announced early Monday by his transition office, comes as the real estate mogul continues a series of interviews, meetings with aides and other deliberations aimed at forming his administration.In a statement, Trump says he’s “thrilled to nominate” Carson, saying he “has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities.”Carson has been coy about joining the new administration, saying shortly after Trump’s election victory that he wasn’t certain he’d fit into a Cabinet-style role. The discussion at that time centred on speculation that Carson might be selected to head the sprawling Department of Health and Human Services.Trump’s statement Monday says, “Ben shares my optimism about the future of our country and is part of ensuring that this is a presidency representing all Americans.”___This story has been corrected to show that Pelosi is the House Democratic leader, not the speaker. by The Associated Press Posted Dec 5, 2016 8:34 am MDT Last Updated Dec 5, 2016 at 6:06 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email The Latest: Trump, family members dining at 21 Club read more