West Ham’s Takeover Is Well-Considered, Stable and Boring
For those not emotionally invested, the sale of a prominent Premier League club is chum in the water. We want easily caricatured nutballs in charge, huge transfer budgets, grandiose schemes destined to fail and decimations of the club’s staff. We want entertainment.
Given that context and the club’s unique penchant for disaster, West Ham’s sale was abominable, substandard and lamentable. Given one word, it was boring. Profoundly boring.
CB Holding, the original Icelandic creditors of Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson, took control of West Ham to keep it from going bankrupt and protect it’s investment. The ownership stays Icelandic. The only difference is the Straumur Burdaras bank rather than Landsbanki.
West Ham’s financial situation was perilous. There was the bank crisis, debt and the Tevez settlement. They easily could have entered into administration. There would have been furor over a points deduction, possibly one that could have effected the relegation battle next year. The club would have been offloading players, possibly replacing Zola with a manager who would accept it. It would have been messy. It would have been exciting.
Instead, the new Hammers’ ownership wants to protect and enhance its investment. There will be no sales of the clubs best players, though sensible sales such as Dean Ashton and Matthew Upson are possible.
The reasonably successful managerial partnership of Zola and Clarke will remain intact. The club will even have a sensible transfer budget, all with a sound financial backing.
CB Holding’s takeover is great for West Ham and their supporters. It’s great for the Premier League, who benefit from a large, successfully run club in London. It’s awful for those who have to write about it.