Franz Beckenbauer, Bayern Munich’s honorary president, said that his team is willing to pay Schalke as much as 50m euros for their goalkeeper – Manuel Neuer.
This goes against everything in the moneyball doctrine adopted by many clubs. A goalkeeper? For 50m euros?! You lost it dear Keiser!
However, this is proper football investment – even if an investment banker wouldn’t agree. Manuel Neuer is worth that kind of money for a club making big money.
Bayern Munich had problems with the goalkeeper position since Oliver Kahn retired in 2008. A great goalkeeper is essential for a solid defence and if you want a great team you need a solid defense. Paying great money for a great goalkeeper is good business for any club who wants to win.
If you think about it, buying a 25 year old goalkeeper like Neuer for even for 50m euros (in reality, he’ll cost 25 m euros) is a solid investment. If he plays 10 years for the team – that is 5m euro a year. Add on his salary and it’s 10m euro a year for a goalkeeper that wins you trophies.
I know a lot of Arsenal supporters who would buy into that.
Not all record breaking buys are worthwhile, yet a bet on a young player, who already had shown great potential and could be properly educated is a good one. Can anyone say Rio Ferdinand and Wayne Rooney (both cost Manchester United around £30m) were not worth what the club paid for them essentially?
Paying more than 20m euro for one player is always a gamble. These are the gambles big clubs have to make.