The Blog that's not always wrong.

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Modric and the Media Mogul

 I hate a man who always says "yes" to me. When I say "no" I like a man who also says no

 Have Daniel Levy and Sam Goldwyn ever been seen together? Exactly. They are one and the same.

'Don't pay any attention to the critics - don't even ignore them.' ( Sam Goldwyn)
And that is exactly what I am going to do after being taken to task last time for banging on about L**a M****c. But there are lessons to be learned and inferences to be drawn beyond the everyday story of a Croatian in London.

And anyway it's the only story in N17 at the moment. So, spoiler alert , this column contains flash photography, strobe lighting and references to a footballer who seems to be rapidly getting on every Spurs fans nerves.

' A verbal agreement is not worth the paper it's written on' (Sam Goldwyn)
This has to be our starting point in this seemingly endless saga. But in the Modric, Levy showdown there is a further complication because it has been described as a 'gentleman's agreement. For this to work you need a handshake between two gentlemen.

When I want your opinion, I'll give it to you. (Sam Goldwyn)
Levy's whole schtick is in being known as a hard nosed, tough negotiator. He makes no claims and has no pretensions to being a 'gentleman'. So the agreement falls at the first hurdle. We will never know exactly what was said but until this point Modric has come across as a decent, modest individual. His claims though naive and somewhat pathetic have the ring of truth.

I read part of it all the way through. (Sam Goldwyn)
This is where Luka's and his agent went off the rails when they signed his new 6yr contract last year. The virulent attacks on Luka for his about face in some ways reflect the high esteem in which he was held. Many, including me, thought that Modric, with his background in war torn Croatia and his apparent humility, was different. Shockingly to some of us he is exactly the same money grabbing mercenary las all the rest.
I'll take fifty percent efficiency to get one hundred percent loyalty'. (Sam Goldwyn)
We are dicing with death on the high wire of football and there is apparently no loyalty at the top. This is not the first example and there will be more of this to come.

Some are reflecting that this finally shows that football has gone beyond the pale. That it is dominated by obscene amounts of money and egos bigger than the size of a new stadium.

Hello. Where have you guys been for the past 20 years?. The business model of professional football is unsustainable and leagues throughout Europe are dominated in each country by a three or four very rich clubs who use their economic power to dominate the market. This is not new, it may be getting worse but it is not new.

For your information, I would like to ask a question (Sam Goldwyn)
. What does it tell us about Tottenham if Luka goes? Firstly I still believe that he will when the price reaches £35 million or above. Clearly it would demonstrate that our progress under Enic, Jol and Harry has run out of steam if we can't hang on to our key players. The line on the sandy beach will be obliterated by the falling coconuts of high finance. Hold onto that image if you can.

I can only give you definite perhaps on this' (Sam Goldwyn)
Is this a strategic pause whilst the new financial regime kicks in, or until the Harry legal situation is resolved? Nobody knows not even the most prestigious of ITK's. Although the words 'prestigious' and 'ITK' do not fit easily into the same sentence.

Spare no expense to save money on this one. (Sam Goldwyn)
The idea that Levy will let Modric 'rot on the bench' is laughable. That particular train left the station with Dimitar Berbatov aboard. I am not cynical enough to believe that this is a put up job by Luka, his agent and Daniel but I do believe that this move will be facilitated in the 'best interests of all concerned' when the threshold is reached, whatever it is.

Am I obsessed by our little Croatian? If I am I'm in good company as it dominates the Tottenham scene at the moment especially in the absence of signings that help to advance our situation. But it clearly has a significance beyond the individual player. It tells us more exactly where Tottenham under Levy are at this moment.

If Bill Nicholson were alive today, he'd turn over in his grave. (Sam Goldwyn about Roosevelt)
In these terms Modric cannot be sold. Unfortunately he doesn't come out of this too well and a bond of trust has undoubtedly been broken whatever happens. But Levy in particular backed up by Harry have declared that Modric will not be sold. In other words we are no longer a 'selling' club. Getting into the Champions' League was not a blip, but a logical result of several years of progress with a stable squad and more stable managership.

It was failing to get there this season that is the blip and incidentally the root of our current problems. Blame who you like for that failure but Modric was certainly part of it and this intensifies the hostile reaction to his expressed desire to move to Chelsea, not for the money, but because he wants to go to a 'bigger' club.

We're overpaying him, but he's worth it. ( Sam Goldwyn)
Now Chelsea are Johnny Come Latelies to the 'bigger' club scene and owe most of it to the whim of a Russian oligarch of dubious provenance. But this century they are more successful than us and are offering to more than double Luka's pay from £45.000 a week to £120.000. Try explaining to your new wife why you are turning your back on that.

Harry has distanced himself nicely from events by siding with the disappointed and confused player and Levy will get all the back wash if Modric is sold. Good cop, bad cop? Perhaps but Levy runs the risk of finally losing all credibility if this plays out how I think it will.

'You've got to learn to take the bitter with the sour' (Sam Goldwyn)
Of course it's only one player and we have done well without him at times; Van Der Vaart could play his role and we have plenty of talented midfielders on the books even now. A couple of strikers and we are good to go.Although if Kranjcar, Palacios, and Jenas move on we will be looking a little threadbare especially with Sandro out for a couple of months.
'I'm willing to admit that I'm not always right: but I'm never wrong'. (Sam Goldwyn)

The highlighted quotes are attributed to Sam Goldwyn the Movie Mogul. I'm not certain that he said them all but as he might have said himself:
'Even if he didn't say any of them, it's still a remarkable achievement. (JimmyG2)

I've said how I think it will pan out but with proviso.
Never make forecasts, especially about the future ( Sam Goldwyn)



Anonymous said...

I don,t believe, someone talking a lot of sense,wiv a litle goldwyn humour, BRILLIANT

Anonymous said...

Great - thanks

TMWNN said...

It's strange how so many go on the offensive when you even hint that Levy might not be quite the man some appear to think.

It would also seem that these same people, pro or anti Stratford, ignore the fact that he was more than prepared to move to the OS without proper fan consultation and without fully exploring every avenue that would make the NDP 'viable'.

I wonder if they'll still feel the same when Modric is inevitably sold. It would be great to see a chairman of another club actually make a player 'rot' on the bench, but to think that Levy, who knows the price of everything but the value of nothing, will be that chairman is incredible.

Anonymous said...


bexo said...

I don't see the blame in this anywhere tbh. Chelsea want modric and who can blame them, modric wants more money and who can blame him and levy wants at least double what he paid for him and who can blame him? Every player has his price and this lil shit is no different. What is sad about this is we all thought the boy was different. I've never gone off a player as quickly as I have luka, just want him gone and if levy can get £30m+ & drogba then all the better. But levy has got to start getting things in order or the coming campaign will just be another making up the numbers season.

Anonymous said...

If only Chelsea would see that the real talent at WHL is obviously Levy and then make a bid for him....I can only dream. I loved the quotes Jimmy and you are right when you say that Levy has a a first-class anus I think.

Anonymous said...

The only way on Gods earth that Levy will sell Modric is if Modric makes it utterly and totally clear that he is not committed to the cause. This could be disruption in the dressing room, lack of effort on the pitch/training, bad mouthing in the press, going on strike.

If Modric behaves like this in a deliberate and calculated attempto to force a move, and the price is right then maybe, just maybe Levy will back down from his clear as daylight "He is not for sale, end of storey" statement.

If CFC keep upping their offer and Modric remains silent and Levy sells then it is then just about money.

What is impressive about Levy is that you never quite now what his motives are, whether he actually means what he is saying and if not what are the reasons behind what he is saying...its almost the polar opposite of Harry who has verbal-diarrhea and always says far too much without any thought or deeper hidden meaning.

For this reason, until it all becomes clear, I do not think we can judge Levy over the OS saga. Ultimately the whole thing may secure us £50m of Government money which may have been the whole intention, or just a second best in Levy's mind. Who knows. Similarly with Modric. I think the "not for sale" is not an attempt to crank up his value, i think we are 100% determined to keep Modric but only time will tell.

I'd hate to play poker against Levy....his eyes look like they'd burn into your head and read your mind.

TMWNN said...

I think we can safely say that Levy was serious about moving to the OS by making it a joint bid with AEG. Or were they in on Levy's master plan too, anon 18:21?

So many people talk about Levy and his great poker game, that I'm half expecting to see him at the next WSOP final, wearing dark glasses and a funny hat - Daniel 'do no wrong' Levy.

100% agree about Redknapp though.

Des said...

I certainly would not want idiots like you running our football club.
Hats off to you Daniel, whether its the Olympic stadium or Modric I back him 100%.
By the way you have far too much time on your hands.
Also although I would prefer we dont move to Stratford I admire his strategy, business sense and realise that my view in running a football club in 2011 is as irrelevant as is the crap I just read.
Thankfully Daniel is in charge and he has Harry who is a cunning fox managing the team rather than the Pub managers you obviously are

elwehbi@ibleedhotspur said...

Running a football club is a business. Modric will go for the right price, but nothing under that.

JimmyG2 said...

Some of you have missed the point here.
I don't rate DL as highly as some but the comparison with Sam Goldwyn is an affectionate one.

Steady on, some of my best friends are Pub Managers and I have supported quite a few over the years.
Harry is about as cunning as Baldrick.

IKnowAlanGilzean said...

I very much liked the Sam Goldwyn quotes, very nicely and comically sequed piece.

I think he'll go ultimately as it's pointless keeping openly unhappy players, no matter how good. Unless he is willing just to get on with it, which I doubt longer term.

I imagine unless they bid 35-40 million or more he'll stay until January, though who knows what state team morale will be in by then.

JimmyG2 said...

Not sure if it's the beginning of the end or the end of the beginning.
At least he's on the plane and hasn't got a diplomatic injury like Fabregas.

The chips do seem to be falling nicely into place for him to hold the govt. to ransom over the OS.
Not that this will provide enough money to make the NDP viable, but it might help.
He will claim the credit and good luck to him.
More luck than judgment though.

Anonymous said...


If Levy had not gone for the OS, what bargaining power would we have right now?

None! is the answer.

We are basically saying to the Govt, give us some money and we'll make this embarrassing mess go away! And if during the course of judical review we establish wrong doing, maybe there is someone we can sue to recover the costs of our bid.

You are not seeing the big picture and while you may put down the Levy-Lovers as being blinkered, you are equally blinkered by your prejudice.

JimmyG2 said...

Me and Sam Goldwyn not seeing the big picture?
Whatever next?
Listen you may be right, whether you credit Daniel
or not it makes no difference.
We all have our prejudices, mine are just better argued than some.#
Not yours obviously.

If Levy had not got distracted by the OS we might be in the new stadium at the NDP by now.

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