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Bobby McMahon

Bobby McMahon

You can see me on Soccer Central most Mondays and Thursdays on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada. I write a regular column for and and frequently guest on various podcasts and radio shows.


Players Barcelona (And Real Madrid) Decided Were Not Good Enough – Part Two

Written by on June 25, 2013 | 13 Comments »
Posted in Barcelona

 Part one  looked at the dilemma faced by Barcelona – give young players like Thiago Alcântara and Martin Montoya more playing time at the expense of more proven talent or risk losing them.Part two considers some La Masia players who have been allowed to leave and some big money transfers that did not stick around long at Camp Nou.

Signed or nurtured but still failed

Defender Martin Caceres was signed from… to read more please click on the link.

13 responses to “Players Barcelona (And Real Madrid) Decided Were Not Good Enough – Part Two”

  1. Rob says:

    Ed-Despite Barca spending some serious money which player that was brought in for big money has been hugely successful and able to establish himself as a regular? I can only think of Alves. All other big buys have been somewhat disappointing. Pique was a cheaper buy due to his lack of playing time at United.

    I guess what I’m trying to say that your thoughts of people viewing Barca as the little team that could is off. People, like myself, think Barca as the team who brought up the spine of their team through the youth system and have only spent from the treasures of their success. And to add to that, that even the best struggle when trying to rely on a business model of making expensive purchases.

    Bobby-Thanks, great read 🙏

  2. Ed Gomes says:

    Bobby, I couldn’t help but chuckle when I read some of those names.
    Being a Benfica fan, I saw many of those players pass through, either on loan or transfer. Yes, there were failures like Keirrison (loan) but also successes like Javi Garcia which we sold to City for a tidy profit.
    Benfica has been successful in acquiring “failed” projects from the two Spanish giants. Garcia, Saviola and Garay, who should bring a nice profit, come to mind. Benfica also has Nolito, former Barca B, who will bring something since he came on a free.
    They’ve now started taping into the Belgium, Dutch and Serbian markets, with all showing great promise.

    The one name I didn’t see mentioned was Bojan. A player that could look good in Barca’s system with great players around him, but who is very ordinary elsewhere.

  3. Ed Gomes says:

    Ron, are you saying that Barca has won inspite the huge transfers?
    Nobody is denying the value of La Masia. It’s produced world class talent. Xavi is amazing and Iniesta is appreciated plenty. But to say that even a malcontent like Ibra didn’t help is crazy.
    What I was trying to say is that Ibra and Villa are polar opposites as strikers, yet neither has been able to somehow mesh. You can say the same of Sanchez.

    What I was trying to point out is that Barca is more than just La Masia. They spend as much and at times more than the other top clubs.

  4. Ed Gomes says:

    Sorry Rob. Moving train, fat fingers.

  5. Alberta Gooner says:

    Don’t know whether you’ve seen this, Bobby, but it could have some real ramifications for Spanish football.

  6. AG – some are interpreting centralized sale of rights as automatically decreasing the big two’s revenue while giving more to the others. The article is a clearer interpretation of what it is really trying to do.

  7. Alberta Gooner says:


    What’s interesting to me is the activist approach being taken by the Spanish government in terms of enforcing financial accountability on clubs as well as players, as Mr. Messi found out.

  8. Ed Gomes says:

    Bobby, I interpreted it the exact opposite way.
    Like the article says, Barca and Real bring in substantial more money than the others. Even if the TV deal gets rearranged, the overall gap in talent and revenue will widen, in the long run. If the best talent gets sold, salaries will drop and eventually government will earn less taxes from players and struggling clubs.
    No government has been able to run any program without it going into debt. This will fill some pockets, while just sounding good.
    I remember reading how Barca and Real are .2% of Spain’s GDP. It doesn’t sound like much, but that’s two futebol clubs. The league needs clubs, but its also nothing without them. You can say more equality is needed, but even the article states that the other clubs will need to sell more.
    The question I have, is why doesn’t the government regulate the clubs as the rules are in place now. All they’re proposing is getting their money directly. I’m sure there’s folks that are currently employed that should be collecting the taxes. If corruption is found, throw presidents/board/owners in jail.

  9. Ed Gomes says:

    Bobby, I don’t know if you saw the following.

    It’s pretty startling.

  10. Alberta Gooner says:

    In 2012, the OECD reported Spain’s GDP was 1.049 trillion euros. In the same year, the Deloitte’s Money League reported the combined turnover of Real Madrid and Barcelona was 985 million euros. If anybody is too lazy to do the math, that figure represents .000938 per cent of Spain’s GDP.

  11. Ed Gomes says:

    I apologize for my laziness.
    I went back and noticed the article I read stated .02%. Still off from your mark.

  12. Smiley says:

    FYI – .02% = .0002

  13. Ed Gomes says:


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