But one billionaire believes now’s the proper time to put money into the European sport.
American investor Joseph DaGrosa, CEO of personal fairness agency GACP, has already began possession discussions with two Premier League golf equipment — though confidentiality agreements imply he cannot disclose who — and is poised to advance his plans for possession platform Kapital Soccer Group (KFG).
“We’re not overly involved if a membership is shedding cash, notably within the Covid-19 surroundings,” DaGrosa tells CNN Sport.
“We perceive the world has modified however we wish to make it possible for the membership is positioned for on-field success which can in the end result in monetary success.
“We wish to make it possible for the administration on the sporting aspect is robust — which incorporates not simply the supervisor, but in addition scouting — and that the infrastructure’s sturdy.
“We’re searching for golf equipment with good academies to develop native expertise.”
An excellent time to purchase
DaGrosa led a takeover of French membership Bordeaux in 2018, the second American businessman to put money into French soccer, however offered out final yr.
He was additionally shut to buying Premier League aspect Newcastle United final December earlier than discussions with present proprietor Mike Ashley broke down.
Now, nonetheless, he believes the Covid-19 pandemic has introduced a novel alternative, notably relating to signing gamers.
“I believe there’s alternative to purchase golf equipment at decrease costs than just some months in the past, however extra importantly, there’s a possibility to accumulate gamers, no less than for the subsequent couple of switch market home windows, at fairly materials reductions as a result of golf equipment want money,” explains DaGrosa.
“Nearly each membership on the market with only a few exceptions are searching for methods to shore up their funds and the best method to do this is to promote gamers.
“Everybody’s aware of a must not get relegated and so forth however I believe numerous golf equipment are confronted with a really powerful selection by way of staying up within the desk and producing money by way of the sale of gamers and I believe numerous them are compelled to promote gamers that they in any other case would possibly wish to maintain.
“I believe it is an excellent time should you can play offense on this switch market window and be on the shopping for aspect; I believe it is a notably good time to be on the shopping for aspect.”
Metropolis Soccer Group (CFG), which is owned by Abu Dhabi United Group and Emirati royal Sheikh Mansour, has emerged as a profitable possession mannequin over the previous decade.
For the reason that Abu Dhabi homeowners bought Manchester Metropolis in 2008, the group has gone on to purchase different golf equipment around the globe, together with in the US, Australia, Japan, Uruguay, Spain and India.
The China Media Capital consortium purchased a 13% stake of CFG for $400 million in December 2015, whereas US non-public fairness big Silver Lake acquired simply over 10% of CFG for $500 million final yr.
“The entire concept behind a number of membership possession is diversification of income streams and earnings and synergies throughout the platform,” says DaGrosa.
“I believe (CFG) has been very profitable in creating that platform. It is taken them fairly a while to do this, and that is not a criticism, that is simply how their plan has performed out, a gradual plan to develop over time.
“Our plan is, on this surroundings, we predict there’s distinctive alternatives which have opened as much as us that in any other case did not exist for CFG up to now.
“We wish to capitalise on it, each by way of velocity of execution in addition to in the end what we’re paying for the golf equipment relative to what they might have paid.”
DaGrosa’s time at Bordeaux could not have gone easily so far as outcomes have been involved — the membership completed 14th in Ligue 1 within the 2018/19 season, its lowest inserting in 14 years — however he nonetheless sees the expertise as a studying curve.
“As an American I had a newfound appreciation for the actual ardour for the game in Europe and extra notably for the fervour inside a selected metropolis,” he says.
It additionally bolstered his opinion that possession is just not essentially about rewriting a membership’s historical past books.
“As homeowners we’re simply a part of that membership’s and that metropolis’s long-term historical past and on the finish of the day we’re only a small a part of it within the grand scheme of issues,” DaGrosa provides.
“As I all the time stated in Bordeaux, the membership’s been round 139 years, we have been solely a part of that for simply over a yr.
“However had we been a part of that for 5 years, 10 years or 15 years, it is nonetheless nothing greater than a chunk of the continuum of the lifetime of the membership.”