There was tucked away in the ‘Slicker’ financial section of Private Eye an article on Fulham’s finances. It reported that Shahid Khan bought Fulham for £121m (not the £150-200m bandied about). The net assets of the Bermuda Company Big Cat Holdings, that were the vehicle for al Fayed’s ownership, were £13m. At this stage an accountant needs to explain to me how, if players value are treated as an asset, as this seems ridiculously low. Fulham lost £33m in 2014, this must be due to relegation, compared with £2.7 in the last al Fayed season. Revenues were up from £71m to £93m. Khan injected loans of £50m into the club which were converted into shares no doubt to stay within financial fair play rules.
The obvious conclusion in footballing terms is that Khan can only get this money back by getting Fulham promoted. In financial terms it seems he bought a pup. One assumes he appreciates that the common denominator of the two promoted and four play-off teams is they have a manager capable of promotion. I have mentioned before how Norwich’s, who beat Fulham for the first time over 30 years yesterday, fortunes increased when Alex Neil was appointed. Sam Allardyce is mentioned. He no doubt (and justifiably) believes that, in achieving a upper table position for West Ham, his renewal of contract should not be a matter of discussion but mere rubber stamping. Mark Warburton has done a great job at Brentford and is available. A new manager will say, as most do, that the current squad is not good enough and will want say £20m. With the sale of Patrick Roberts and maybe Bettinelli and the parachute payment this should be affordable without further loans.
There is another scenario. Khan has written off the £121m. He rarely comes to Fulham. He is a billionaire in a automotive parts, owns the Jacksonville Jaguars and might just consider, as the song goes, “Let’s call the whole thing off.”
Its matter of conjecture . What is not is as the curtain has fallen on the least most enjoyable Fulham season I can recall one in which relegation looked a possibility, we conceded 83 goals, there were very few games i wish to remember and the footballing stewardship of the club from Magath to Kit the Perm has been well below par.