It seemsthat Fenerbahçe has no intention of halting their transfer market frenzy. The club's latest, and probably most sensational, transfer was Robin van Persie from Manchester United. The flying Dutchman cost the club 25 million euros with everything included; 6.5 million euros to United, 13.5 million euros for three years and 5 million euros direct cash to Van Persie. In total, it is 5 million euros more than what Fenerbahçe made last year on the eight players who the club sent to other teams. Nevertheless, the Fenerbahçe-loving media claims that the money earned from those eight players will compensate the club's new transfers, but with Van Persie, Fenerbahçe's spending reached 34 million euros for just transfer fees, and when the new players', except Van Persie's, annual 15 million euros wage is included, the total spending reaches almost 50 million euros. Added to that, there is also the money spent on coach Vitor Pereira and sporting director Giuliano Terraneo and the numbers may even increase with match bonuses and new transfers.
However, Fenerbahçe will of course pay these transfer fees in installments and this year's bill is 16 million euros in transfer fees and 18 million euros for new wages. As the Fenerbahçe media claims, wages are already done by the money left over from departed players, and let's assume they are right, but then what about the other 16 million? Fenerbahçe chairman Aziz Yıldırım recently rejected the claims that a Qatari bank will sponsor Fenerbahçe's transfers in exchange for the Şükrü Saraçoğlu Stadium's naming rights. Thus, the sponsor of this crazy budget is still unknown. In response to Ercan Güven from Milliyet, who asked where Fenerbahçe found the money to make these transfers, Aziz Yıldırım ironically said: "When I took the charge, Fenerbahçe was in debt to almost everyone. I paid $30 million to the club, I brought the money with tennis ball bags. Do not worry, I am still alive and here."
Has Yıldırım found an oil well recently or am I missing something? Because last time I checked the club had $110 million in debt and did not make any "astonishing" transfers in the last three years for this reason. Thus, Yıldırım and his crew rely on the team's success and the money will flow from there. Nevertheless, that is where things get more complicated than Yıldırım thinks.
With its new squad and well-disciplined coach, Fenerbahçe's current power might be enough to dominate the Super League, but Yıldırım's main goal, the Champions League, demands much more than that. For instance, recently I watched one of the Fenerbahçe's potential opponents, Shakhtar Donetsk against Monaco and they were simply excellent. Coach Mircea Lucescu has created a team that is so compact and organized in 10 years and a brand new Fenerbahçe is a long way off such a good team despite its talented players. Furthermore, a moderate squad in the Champions League is equivalent to Fenerbahçe's. Thus, this great investment might result in deep frustration and only domestic success. Aziz Yıldırım may save himself with the League trophy, but without international success, which is not likely, Fenerbahçe's spending is unjustified.