The battle between Inter and AC Milan on the field tomorrow will also feature a duel between two ownership groups with different ideas on how to run a football club.
As La Gazzetta dello Sport reports, the model that Milan are trying to represent at the moment in Italian football under the American hedge fund Elliott Management is more of a medium-term vision built around sustainability and becoming economically virtuous.
In the January transfer window Juventus signed Dusan Vlahovic and Inter responded by getting Robin Gosens, while the attitude of the Rossoneri was not to respond out of panic but to be happy with the acquisition of 18-year-old striker Marko Lazetic, a profile for the future.
The ownership and management are happy to cough up money if the right technical profiles are found at the correct prices, while the idea of sustainability has seen players like Gigio Donnarumma, Hakan Calhanoglu and soon Franck Kessie to leave on a free transfer in search of higher wages, because they were demanding salaries not considered in line with the club’s policy.
For the fans, the most important numbers are not the ones on the accounts that do not involve their money, but rather the tally of trophies won at the end of the season, or at least results that show the team are competitive.
Through a careful scouting policy and the work of Paolo Maldini, Ricky Massara and Stefano Pioli, the virtuosity pursued by Elliott in the balance sheets coincided with the return of Milan to the Champions League after seven long years.
However, Milan are not Atalanta who can afford not to make it to the Champions League, because in any case that result in Bergamo is rightly considered an exceptional target. Milan must win trophies, must get into Europe’s top club competition and must compete in it – fans will not except any less.
It is clear that in a football landscape where colossal monuments converge (Real Madrid), luxurious “toys” of oligarchs (Chelsea), state-run clubs (PSG, Manchester City), political clubs (Barcelona, symbol of Catalan independence), dynasties (Juventus of Agnelli-Elkann) and teams of families (Inter of Zhang), the game played by Milan is complex and complicated.
Elliott are the most important hedge fund in the world, but they know that a lot of work is needed to improve Milan’s financial situations and that they could become the reference point of a new football model.
READ MORE: Botman pursuit proceeding well for Milan but Renato Sanches pauses – the reason