Is Goldman Sachs going to run Manchester United?

Jim O'Neill.jpg
Jim O’ Neill, a Goldman Sachs big wheel fronts the Red Knights consortium
One must ask how many degrees of separation Jim O’ Neill has from his company Goldman Sachs? O’Neill is the frontman in the Red Knights consortium that counts sixty members who have banded together in the hopes of buying out Man Utd from the Glazers.
They have raised an eye popping £1.5 billion in their bid and it appears that they can go higher which should make the Glazers deliriously happy. The Red Knights are being cheered on by the Man Utd Supporter Trust (MUST) whose alarm over the club’s enormous amounts of debt has gone viral boosting their membership to well over a 100,000 in a few short weeks. Its a bit weird when you think about it. Tea Baggers and Wall Street type honchos mixing it up?
It sounds reassuring when O’Neill touts his lifelong Man Utd fan credentials. He is also Goldman Sachs head of global economic research. The company was also among the advisers on the Man Utd bond issue.
A reality check here. You do realize that the guys running the financial show in the Obama administration are the ones thick as thieves with the Wall Street fat cats. That is Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley. Every effort at financial reform and transparency has been stymied by these institutions with a boost up by Timothy Geithner and Larry Summers, the point men in the US government. The irony is that the economy’s implosion and its spiraling global effect was a direct consequence of these institutions making investments that stank. A phenomenon that has not left football untouched.
When I say Goldman Sachs it is a euphemism for these investors who seem largely to come from such a background. It is a good question to ask whether they represent their institutions or whether they come as concerned citizens or fans to save Man Utd? The recession was made far worse by these very financial institutions who largely hid all those junk investments by flouting mark to market accounting rules. Till the bottom fell out. Transparency has never been their strong suit.
The one thing that the Glazers and the Portsmouth debacle should have taught us- don’t cheer lead every potential investor that comes along. Look for the conflict and/or confluence of interests and ask these questions. It could save a lot of grief.

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