Football may never be the same again.
The beautiful game was awakened by the corona virus crisis, which cannot be ignored.
In fact, it may be time to press the reset button while clubs, players, agents, and soccer authorities look at each other long and thoroughly before a completely different morning.
A leader in a top club said this week: “Is it acceptable to pay so much money to a player?
“How will the public react if clubs spend hundreds of millions of pounds on a new signature, spend millions on a new contract, or agents pay millions to do business?
“Everyone thought football was safe, but in reality it was just as vulnerable as other companies, and the days of plenty could be a thing of the past.
“One thing is certain, football will never be the same afterwards.”
The top clubs are all nervous about spending millions on new players if there could be a public backlash with the nation in desperate condition after the pandemic.
They thought their fortune – footballers – would only increase in value, but nothing is certain, and suddenly the value of contracts, players and even TV deals is no longer worth anything if everything stops.
There is real concern that the corona virus, even if it disappears soon, may reappear – and football has to face it and be more economical.
You are already seeing an impetus for deals and transfers on hold, as uncertainty affects society as a whole far beyond football.
It would be a terrible sight for football if wealthy clubs continued to spend money in the face of thousands of deaths and a modern tragedy along with a global recession.
They are also facing a few uncertain months because they are desperately trying to resume the games and ensure that the billion dollar TV deals are secured, but more than £ 700m is at stake and if no other ball is kicked, cash will have to be paid will be back.
With hundreds of millions at stake, clubs at all levels need to be more careful because they really don’t know what the future holds.
Of course life goes on and it would be naive to assume that there will never be big business again in the future, but it is the amount of surplus that has to decrease.
Premier League clubs have spent over £ 1bn in the last four summer transfer windows and reached £ 1.4bn last year.
The difference in the future may be that this number will be cut back as clubs continue to buy well-known players – but this crisis will be a moment for football.
It shows that football is not indestructible, that clubs have to be more responsible and that this is already taking shape, since the corona virus has clearly done more than just sting people’s consciences.
They have become more socially aware and socially responsible. Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola donates £ 920,000 to fight the virus in Spain. Brighton donates tickets to NHS employees, committed players, and clubs that give large amounts to the community.
There was a reconnection to the real world, the multi-billion dollar soccer industry may have rediscovered its soul through the most devastating, desperate, and heartbreaking circumstances.
Football doesn’t matter in times like these, and that may underline that paying players over £ 300,000 a week doesn’t make much sense.
Sponsors should also be more careful. In Germany, the players from Bayern Munich, Dortmund and Borussia Mönchengladbach agreed on a 20 percent wage cut to help their clubs and their game in the crisis.
But amidst the generous offer, there is a realization that millions of people around the world are suffering, but nobody wants football to flaunt its excess. Multi-million pound players can afford to get paid a little less.
A leading agent admitted that even during the crisis, negotiations on smaller businesses are being conducted – but the big ones will be put on hold until we know where this crisis is going.
Nobody wants a player to show a new flash car on the back of a big cash train or contract. Nobody wants £ 150m to be spent on a player if their business has failed.
This is the reality check for football, and after all, those at the top of the game have the message.