Just Why Would Man Utd Want To Get Involved With Tevez and MSI Anyway?

Carlos Tevez is a top player. On this site we’ve already said we believe he’d be a big star at Man Utd because he will be a big star wherever he goes, much as he has wherever he’s been.

But is it worth the hassle? The player is brilliant but those involved with his affairs have attracted the attention of authorities wherever they’ve gone so murky are their dealings. Tevez’s affairs have been intimately tied-up with MSI, the mysterious Russian backed group controlled by exiled Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky and fronted by Kia Joorabchian.

MSI first surfaced in 2004 as an investor in Brazilian club Corinthians, signing a 10 year partnership deal with the club. The Latin record deal that took Carlitos from Boca Juniors to Corinthians was a statement of intent as South Americans looked on stunned as MSI flung around millions assembling talent in a cash starved corner of Planet Football.

But while Corinthians fans lorded it over their rivals Brazilian authorities launched an investigation that remains open principally because most of the millions MSI supposedly poured into Brazil never actually passed through the country and the transactions have never been fully explained hidden as they are behind a myriad of off shore bank accounts. The suspicion remains among authorities that the whole Corinthians-MSI deal could have formed some form of money laundering operation. For the man on the street in Brazil, MSI and Russian Mafia are equally interchangeable terms.

Since Tevez and Mascherano left Corinthians the club’s relations with MSI have all but collapsed and from having South America’s most expensively assembled squad, the club are now broke again and facing a second season fighting relegation. No doubt this is in large part the fault of the corrupt oligarchs that run it but many questions still surround MSI’s involvement and it remains to be explained how it sought to benefit from such a huge investment in the South American game and whether any of this was realised or not.

Since then MSI and its leading participants have moved their attentions to Europe, bringing Tevez and Mascherano to West Ham in a deal that has proved a constant headache for all involved since so convoluted and irregular was its structure. Now the proposed move of Tevez from West Ham has relit the fires of controversy once again.

The question now is whether a player of the undoubted quality of Tevez is worth the bother to a club with the history and reputation of Man Utd. Do the Glazers really want the hassle of dealing with dodgy Russian oligarchs and embroiling themselves in the opaque practices of South American football, famous as it is for corruption?

Is signing Tevez worth the company of those who seem to be in charge of his career?



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7 responses to “Just Why Would Man Utd Want To Get Involved With Tevez and MSI Anyway?

  1. FrankTheTank

    So the EPL gets more and more money for bigger and brighter stars and out the window goes any kind of decency or morality? Is that the future?

    Sheffield Utd were brutal on the eye last season but I feel sorry for them and if they do not get back up and Tevez goes to Old Trafford then Man Utd will have essentially pissed on their grave and we can probably expect more and more of these dodgy dealers to show up trying and stick their noses in the trough.


  2. Andrew

    It depends on what you want out of football. Are you content just to see goals and great games, or do you insist that things are done correctly?

    You can have both but it is harder and harder and by relegating Sheffield the EPL has signalled that it care more about money than integrity.

  3. el choripan

    Never mind Sheffield, why did Tevez ever become involved with MSI in the first place? The agents are the real mafiosos – they snap up kids for tuppence when they’re barely out of nappies and ride their coattails all the way to the bank, often without any regard for the players’ well being. Fifa or Conmebol would be better off making that part of the game more transparent. Unlikely, I realize.

  4. Agree with you el choripan but I bet Tevez didn’t think twice about getting involved with MSI because at least at the outset when the deal was being negotiated in Argentina to take him to Brazil it did not seem that out of the ordinary.

    In South America clubs frequently have little hold on the rights of the players, many of whom are owned by syndicates of various interests.

    This came about because of corruption and has resulted in the further impoverishment of clubs who frequently do not reap the benefit of players sold on.

    It would be sad if this practice – opaque and ripe for corrupting influences to exert more sway – was imported from South America into Europe.

  5. The solution is simple, Manchester United must become sole-owners of Tevez (this is the law anyway). If MSI want to act as agents, then fine, but Tevez will be an asset of Manchester United, not MSI.

  6. The problem seems to be that for Man Utd to do so they must pay for the player. But who do they pay? It should be West Ham as they hold the registration and claim the player as theirs.

    But they paid nothing for him and therefore it must be assumed the transfer of Tevez’s registration to West Ham was just to please the authorities and avoid a points deduction. MSI are unlikely to allow this quick-fix stop them getting their hands on the money for the sale of their asset.

    Problem is if West Ham do not get the money then it will be proven that the transfer of the registration into their control was a sham move to avoid punishment and could land them back in the dock and down to the second tier.

  7. el choripan

    Indeed, I’m sure Tevez didn’t think twice – and players never will, if that’s the way the system works. It should be the authorities that clamp down.

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