25 Feb 2013

«We always know precisely why and who we sell or buy»

«Udinese» is known for its selection process: finding a talented young player, buying him for a reasonable price, develop him into a star and subsequently sell him for good or sometimes even great money to someone who is willing, and, most importantly, able to pay for him. Many declare this to be the model of operation, but only few are actually able to deliver the results. «Udinese» handles this process with confidence, and not only from time to time, but on a constant and systemic basis. The nature of this process and how the results get achieved was the subject of the masterclass given to the students of «Sport Industry Management» RMA business school program by the top manager of the Italian club, that has just finished the game in Moscow against Makhachkala based «Anzhi» FC as part of the European league group stage.

«In our selection process we first and foremost consider our budgetary constraints, – said during the class the sports director of «Udinese» Fabrizio Larini. – Of course, in this area we can hardly be compared to such grands «Juventus», «Inter» or «Milan». Neither can we afford to be paying the top price for the already accomplished stars, nor can we pay them their unbelievably high salaries. Therefore, the only truly viable option for our scouting team is to search for the young and promising players, seek out and foresee the traits of their talent before they become too apparent to our competitors who want to beat us to it and make the player's price too expensive for us acquire. Needless to say, there is still a great deal of work required to raise a talented player, to refine his techniques to allow him truly shine, which is only then that we can earn profit by selling him.

I can also add that we are deeply involved in the undeveloped markets, such as Chile, Colombia and other Latin American countries. In our opinion, that is where the true gems can be discovered, especially considering the value of their performance as well as their purchase and resale price. This, of course, by no means takes our attention away from the developed markets, including the European one.

Basically, these are the core principles that we abide by. We've been staying true to them for quite some time, and they continue to deliver the results: for example, when we've found Sanchez, he was merely 17 years old, and cost us at the time 3 million euros, now when last year we have sold him to «Barcelona» we've got 40 million for him.

For 19-year Isla we had to pay 500 thousand, and by the time we sold him to «Juventus» he was worth 8.5 million. Roughly the same amount they paid us for Asamoa, while he, being a 20 year old, only cost us a million. Handanovic, on the other hand, came to us 8 years ago entirely as a free agent, and recently we have sold him to «Inter» for 11 million euros… And these are some of the best transfer deals we've had just in the past two seasons», – pointed out Mr. Larini.

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