Saturday, February 28, 2009

Glazers’ Manchester reign pours down on Tampa...

Manchester United supporters should be keeping an eye on the strange happenings across the Atlantic in Tampa. The Glazers are totally dismantling the team and have sacked all its high-priced talent.

To my mind that can only mean one thing … they have severe cash problems. You will probably remember the stories last year that the Glazers couldn’t renegotiate their ManU debt and missed more than $41 million in payments.

With the recession the cash situation from their commercial property businesses and other ventures can only have got worse.

FYI it is easy for NFL clubs in the US to sack players and coaches. Contracts are not guaranteed. A few weeks back Tampa fired the high-priced coach John Gruden, who won the Super Bowl.

Then out went their number one quarter back and this week five veteran players were cut.

Under league rules Tampa now has about $60m to spend on players and the sad delusional fans believe the club will bring in some new players. My betting is they won’t spend much because the Glazers can’t afford to as they need to stave off default in Manchester.

I bet the money men who backed the Glazers in Manchester are worried sick they may actually have to take over the team come next year.

John Sterlicchi
Read my blog on Anglo-American culture at


  1. I thoroughly enjoy this Man Utd blog, but I thought I'd chime in about the Tampa situation.

    What Tampa has done is quite common in the NFL actually. They have long had a dominant defense, built in the Tampa-2 style which was attributed to the Tony Dungy years at the club. Most players on that defense were getting old though, and were still highly paid. The natural thing to do in the NFL is then to release them and focus on rebuilding through the draft.

    Gruden did win a super bowl, but it came over 5 years ago, basically with the team built by Tony Dungy. Since then Tampa have been inconsistent, and this year they imploded in spectacular fashion to miss the playoffs.

    The team needs a total overhaul for a number of reasons, and I am not convinced a lack of finances is the biggest factor.

  2. as a non-bucaneer fan, i'll throw in my two cents..

    it is, unfortunately all too common in most of american sport to sign long-termed, back ended contracts, and really common in the NFL to sack the player when the money starts to climb higher than the marketing possibilities. esp when they start to approach the ripe old ages of 30+.

    but the glazers are among a handful of american sport owners who have raised this to an artform, as well as "extorting" the local economy into new stadia, or other perks. and so far, while the economy is contracting a rates not seen on this side of the pond since the 20's and 30's, ticket prices are expanding.

    with AIG not helping out on the finances, i wonder what will happen to the glazer sport empire?


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