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All Things Footie | Monday, July 15 | Jordan

Rio-l Estate

On loan England star Rio Ferdinand will make up his mind soon about his future at Elland Road. Reported £35m bids from Manchester United have tempted Leeds to stop leasing the player from Barclays and transfer the debt to Man Utd.

Confused?

Well that (or something similar) is what is really happening I'm afraid. Leeds (along with Leicester, Everton, Bolton and possibly more clubs) are in such dire financial straits that they have all funded at least one signing (in Leeds' case a reported minimum of four) by taking out a ‘player morgage’ from Barclays. Put simply, Barclays put up the cash for a player and the club pay off the loan in installments whilst paying a fee to lease the player.

The system works very much like a home morgage, if the house (player) increases in value and is subsequently sold, the leaser (club) not the bank benefits from the increase in value. If the player decreases in value and anything undesirable happens interest rate/inflation wise however; you have a recipe for a finacially troubled club.

On top of the players wages and a compulsory insurance payment (to cover club bankrupcy) the outgoings of a club leasing players this way must be astronomical. However I try to look at it, it can't be a good thing. The only real advantage is that, as the club don't actually own the player, certain FA rules regarding transfer timescales (e.g. you have to pay an English club in full within 12 months) can be circumvented and a transfer can be payed off over a number of years.

Moving House

I suspect Arsène Wengers capture of Pascal Cygan will turn out to be a shrewd one. I can't say I've actually seen the 2000 French First Division Player of the Year play a great deal, but when I have done he's been magnificent. A game against Manchester United a year or two ago sticks in the memory.

Lens player and Senegal defender Ferdinand Coly has expressed his desire to play in the Premiership. The player has been linked strongly with a move to Arsenal and I wouldn't be surprised to see this particular move happen.

Arsenal's North London neighbours and feeder club Tottenham Hotspur are close to striking a deal with the Premiership Champions for Irish right back Steven Carr. Talk of £12m or more seems a little too much for someone who's not played for the best part of a year though, and I doubt if Arsenal will offer any more than £8m. England U20 midfielder Rohan Ricketts has moved in the other direction but Sergei Rebrov will almost certainly be leaving Glenn Hoddles barmy army, possibly to his old club Dynamo Kiev.

Premiership runners up Liverpool seem to be close to signing Lee Bowyer from Leeds for around £9m. The fee has been agreed and it's only personal terms separating the mental, violent, racist idiot from his new club.

In brief...

Juninho's move to Middlesbrough is back on, with the English club offering improved terms.

Junichi Inamoto has joined Fulham on a one year loan from Gamba Osaka, with a view to a permanent move. now where have I heard that before...

Brighton have named their new manager Martin Hinselwood your time is now.

Coventry and Sweden 'keeper Magnus Hedman looks to be joining Celtic.

Harry Redknapp is talking to David Ginola about a move to Portsmouth.

Everton are close to snapping up talented young midfielder Jason Koumas from Tramere for around £2m.

The slightly less glamorous transfer of Boca Junior's Juan Roman Riquelme to Barcelona has been completed.

Can someone let me know what's so great about Oxford's ground? Real Madrid and Juventus have visited the Kassam Stadium to observe the ‘revolutionary’ pitch.

Finally, apologies for the quietness over the last week. I've been busy going to Graduation ceremony's, hiring tuxedos, going to Balls and helping my girlfriend move out of her house. Normal service is now resumed.

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