Milner to Arsenal? Thanks to FFP it is possible

I’m sorry to say Untold Arsenal is down at the moment – we are working on it.  But in the meantime here is a story that we would have published on that site had we been able to get onto it.

The story is that Arsenal are looking to buy James Milner from FFP-challenged Man City.

Now Man City might not want to keep Milner normally, given the way they bring in and let go players.  But Milner brings a very special benefit to Man City.

He’s English.

If you are a regular reader of Untold (which is on when it is running) you will know that next season Man City can only list 21 players for their Champions League matches.

That’s no problem, said Man City, we only listed 23 last time.  Except that eight of these players have to be home-grown.  Milner and Joe Hart are home grown.  So is Gael Clichy because Arsenal brought him to England early, if you recall.

Lots of other players are home-grown, but they are players that have intimated that they would like to leave, because they don’t get games.  “Ah” say Man City, “you will next season because of FFP.”

But the players know that might be just six games, maybe eight, with their reduced squad, and they really fancy a bit more.

So with others threatening to leave and English players being at a premium Man City will be offering ££££££ to Milner – but other parts of the FFP restrictions on Man City mean they have to keep their salaries down too.  It is all a bit of a problem – even though they keep saying it isn’t.

The word down the pub (ie from journalists) is that “the lad” (all players are “the lad” down the pub) wants to go.  Liverpool or Arsenal, he doesn’t seem to mind.  Besides which if they won’t let him go, he will be on a free in 12 months time when his contract ends.

No problem normally because Man City are owned by a country that can spend anything, and they can afford to buy anyone, but under that pesky FFP business, well…

Arsenal will try a low offer first, (50p maybe) just to annoy Man C, but will up it, and will probably suggest to Milner that he can replace Arteta and play a sort of central midfield role behind the three attacking midfielders.

As for Liverpool, they have no FFP this year, but they must make a profit not just in the current financial year, but the next as well, to ensure they don’t get FFP’d as well, and that means keeping salaries and transfers down.  The cost of Milner might not worry them, but the high salary would, unless they sell Suarez.  Whatever they do, we can expect more lies, following the way the owner handled the bid from Arsenal for Suarez.

Meanwhile Man City act like nothing is wrong – which is what all their publicity says.  So they look to bring in Fernando, Sagna, Eliaquim Mangala…  without even thinking about passports, FFP, money… that’s just the way they do it.

Time will tell, but at least when we want a player we can bid for him, irrespective of what they say in Europe.

Tony Attwood

PS: Please do keep checking Untold – we really are trying to overcome the latest problem.

6 Replies to “Milner to Arsenal? Thanks to FFP it is possible”

  1. Sorry the site is down again.

    The official City site lists the following players as English and I have added Clichy as Home Grown due to Arsenal’s foresight.

    Joe Hart
    Richard Wright
    Jolson Lescott
    Micah Richards
    Gael Clichy (HG)
    Gareth Barry*
    James Milner
    Jack Rodwell
    Scott Sinclair*

    Barry and Sinclair have both been on loan for the season and Barry is hardly likely to return which would leave them with eight so if they do let any go they will have to replace them with other ‘home grown’ players to be able to meet FFP Regulations.

    Football is nowhere near the end of this saga yet and clubs like Southampton will have to work really hard to keep hold of their homegrown talent that they have nurtured for many years. This will be a real shame as they are doing everything the right way and are likely to be robbed of their rightful chance to progress with a very talented group of players.

  2. just to clarify;

    8 players must be home grown. nationality has nothing to do with it.

    4 players have to be ‘country grown’ i.e they have been trained in england for 3 years between the ages of 15-21.

    4 players have to be ‘club grown’ i.e they have been trained by the club between the ages of 15-21.

    players that have been with the club for two years and are u21 are eligable to play and do not have to be registered.

    if you cannot fill your homegrown quota you must leave a empty slot. i.e if city cannot fulfill their homegrown quota they might only be able to register 19 or 20 players.

  3. i dont think city will have any trouble with country grown talent. but i wonder if they have 4 club grown players that would be ready to step up….

  4. I think Uefa have to dock any team falling foul of FFP some points, like say you’ll start your group games with a deficit of 3 points in the CL or Europa. Financial penalties, while they may hurt clubs like Liverpool, are merely a slap on the wrist for the likes of City. They could say a hefty fine will only be imposed in the event the team is not playing in Europe.

  5. You can’t really expect City to willingly allow the likes of Milner & Richards (also apparently unhappy) to leave without “home grown” replacements. Both of these players would be good fits for Arsenal and not cost the huge amounts that we are being expected to pay for so called world class signings.

  6. @Al,
    Like the sound of points being docked rather than monetary fines. The only problem would involve clubs who will rarely play in Europe (Liverpool?). Hope not to revert to a derisory fine 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *