Thursday's soccer news starts with Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke. In an interview with local newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung relayed on the club's official site, Watzke described the financial situation at Dortmund and the broader issues with the biggest clubs in Europe wanting their players.
"Thirteen years ago, we made 75 million euro in turnover, had debts of around 200 million, no longer had our own stadium and were on the verge of bankruptcy," Watzke said. "This year we're set to make well over half a billion in turnover, will have no financial liabilities, the stadium is back in our ownership and we have plenty in the bank."
Watzke went onto compare Dortmund's financial situation with the rest of Europe's elite clubs. He once again confirmed the issue for the rest of Europe competing against the Premier League in general, and even an elite Bundesliga club in particular. The TV money in the Premier League has created a competitive advantage for both incoming and outgoing transfers. The spending power of a handful of European super clubs makes even a club like Dortmund a shop window. Borussia Dortmund sold their principle striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to Arsenal during the January window, with the player pushing for the move.
"It remains our objective to be a big club. But, with regard to the Aubameyang case, one must nonetheless acknowledge that there are six or seven clubs in Europe that are bigger than Borussia Dortmund. And 20 that have more money. If you write the kind of story that Borussia Dortmund have over the course of more than a decade, then unfortunately only the very biggest clubs come in for your players. We are actually one of the few clubs that have produced word-class players that, in economic terms, can be prised away from the club. Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich can solve any problem in the world with money. We can't. Never. That impedes us. The fact is: from a purely financial point of view, it has become easier to prise a player away from BVB that it is from a mid-table club in England. There's so much TV money that even goes to the bottom club in England...but thankfully there are still players who are driven by their hunger for sporting success. We need more of them in the future."
Also in the soccer news, Eintracht advanced in the DFB-Pokal with a 3-0 home win over Mainz. Timmy Chandler was on the bench for Eintracht. Ante Rebic opened the scoring in the 17th minute with an own-goal doubling the lead in the 53rd. Omar Mascarell scored in the 62nd minute. Mainz finished a man down with a red card in the 82nd. Lukas Hradecky kept the clean sheet. Schalke shutout Wolfsburg 1-0 at home with Guido Burgstaller scoring the game's only goal in the 10th minute. Schalke's Weston McKennie an Wolfsburg's John Brooks are both injured.
The Washington Post's Steven Goff talks to DC United's Junior Moreno. MLSsoccer.com's Scott French on the early days of the LA Galaxy vs LAFC rivalry. ESPN FC's Tom Marshall reports on Liga MX looking at their promotion and relegation system due to economic concerns over lower division clubs.
Inside World Football's Paul Nicholson looks at Manchester United's latest financial report. Pro Soccer Talk's Joe Prince-Wright relays Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger's comments on diving in the Premier League. The Guardian's Sid Lowe on Manchester United's Alexis Sanchez becoming the latest player convicted on tax fraud charges in Spain. Keir Radnedge reports that Russian president Vladimir Putin will meet with FIFA president Gianni Infantino on February 12.
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