VICHAI’S WALLET IS ABOUT TO BE FLEECED
AGENTS around the world must be wetting themselves with glee after Leicester chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha announced he would spend £180m “to reach Europe” by 2017.
The Foxes Thai owner has basically committed the boardroom equivalent of strolling round Compton with an iPhone, laptop and blazing in bling. Only a ‘Mug Me’ Tshirt would have been more effective.
Spending the money won’t be hard. As Tony Fernandes discovered at QPR, there are a million chancers, has-beens and mercenaries happy to trouser a slice of the Premier League cake.
But getting value for money as a newly-promoted Premier League club? That will be incredibly tough.
Leicester may be a ‘big’ club with a prestigious past. But in the here and now, they boast no reputation or kudos, no standing on the international stage. All they have is a chairman with a fat wallet.
As a result, the best players will give them a swerve, leaving secondraters on the hunt for a payday. Worse yet, every transfer fee and paypacket will now be doubled in the knowledge that Srivaddhanaprabha has a bottomless pit.
This is exactly what happened to QPR, who tried to mix it with the big boys from day one and had their trousers firmly pulled down.
It’s great that Srivaddhanaprabha, above, wants to back the club. But if he’s got any sense, he should forget talk of Europe by 2017. Trying to grow too big, too fast is a recipe for financial disaster – and one that is doomed to end in embarrassment.