Red Balance Sheet
“Sofia, you can let Gio in now, we’re ready.” called through Pro Sesto 1913’s chairman Gabriele Albertini. He sat with the Managing Director Mauro Ferrero, Finance Director Maurizio Mautone and the Commercial Director Luca Villa in the boardroom.
Giovanni was not used to being called in for off-the-cuff meetings by the board, he only really saw them when it was time for new contracts and discussions about new seasons.
“Thank you for making yourself available, Gio, always good to see you.” Gabriele said.
“Thanks Gabriele, you too,” Giovanni smiled as he looked at the rest of the meeting. “Hello all, how are we doing?”
Mauro, Maurizio and Luca all responded positively.
“I wanted to call this meeting as we have to tell you that our finances are not getting any better. We know that you came into a bad situation and even though you have improved things from what they could have been financially, such as reducing the wage bill in your second year and not even doubling the bill despite promotion, we have to consider alternatives to improving our situation.” Maurizio Mautone said.
The Managing Director then continued Maurizio’s words “We have to consider selling players in the summer if we stay in this division.
“We are obviously not ruling out the possibility of another promotion this season yet despite the poor form as of late. However, we don’t want to put the pressure on you to get promotion now that we have proven ourselves as capable in this division.
“The reality is that we are almost €2.5million in debt and current projections place that debt to get even higher if we don’t begin making big amounts of money on our assets.
“As Maurizio said, this is not on you, this is a problem that lots of lower tier clubs struggle with.”
The commercial director Luca then began speaking his part, producing sheets of paper and passing three copies to each of the attendants.
“We have highlighted certain players’ values perceived by other clubs once the transfer window comes around based on their current form and historical seasons.
“Nikolaj Möller is without a doubt our most valuable permanent asset. We believe we could bring in anywhere between €850,000 to €3,000,000 for him if deals are done right.
“Gorka Olaizola is also a prized young asset, his valuation varies a lot as it can come down to how much other clubs might see his potential. The same applies to Jacopo Sotgiu in our Under 18s.
“Other than that, we may have trouble raising funds through transfers. I am working hard on new sponsorship deals but we must acknowledge the need to bring money in, even if it means a difficult departure.” Luca Villa said.
Giovanni had a lot to take in, but with his experience in the game and seeing certain individuals from his past fly off the handle at these suggestions and end up losing their roles as a result, he reluctantly agreed that it would be best for the club to scale down on its spending and instead try and recoup money.
However, it didn’t come without conditions. Giovanni wanted to extend his contract at the club by a year, meaning his deal would end in 2027. He would keep the same wage as his current contract with the semantics around the conversation on the need to cut spending as much as possible.
The board agreed to the condition and with Pro Sesto in 10th place after 29 games, fans could get behind their club favourite.
Well, as this discussion shows, it seems to be heading the opposite direction as we are going to have to lose men in order to get back on our feet sadly, whenever the right offers do come in. It's a real shame as I also felt that we could go somewhere this season given the start but money rules football now sadly.