Spanish football club FC Sevilla, who recently won the UEFA Europa League championship for the seventh time, is reportedly selling or trading its entire starting lineup in order to repay its €90 million ($98.3 million) debt, according to sports media.
The club’s president, Jose ‘Pepe’ Castro, informed the management of the debt on Friday morning, stating that selling one or two players wouldn’t be enough. This decision comes after the departure of Sevilla’s long-term sporting director, Ramon Rodriguez ‘Monchi’ Verdejo, in mid-June. Monchi, who is now president of football operations at Aston Villa in the British Premier League, left due to the club’s financial situation.
Sevilla’s new sporting director, Victor Orta, has wasted no time in getting to work and has already started making calls to teams across Europe, with Manchester United being one of the clubs reportedly contacted. Orta, who rejoined Sevilla on June 20 after six seasons at Leeds United, was previously the club’s technical director from 2006 to 2013.
The challenge for Orta is not only to sell enough players to repay the club’s debt, but also to assemble a team strong enough to compete in La Liga and keep coach Jose Luis Mendilibar in charge. Sevilla finished 12th in the Spanish top-flight league this season, which is traditionally dominated by Barcelona and Real Madrid. However, they managed to achieve a major upset by winning the 2022-23 UEFA league, defeating Roma on penalties in the final and securing their seventh title.
While it is not uncommon for European football clubs to buy and sell players in the transfer market, the sale of an entire starting lineup is unprecedented. Football is a lucrative business, with clubs like Real Madrid being valued at over $6 billion. However, Sevilla is operating at an annual loss of $38 million.
Sevilla is not the only club facing financial challenges, as Paris Saint-Germain, ranked seventh on Forbes’ list of most valuable football clubs, ended the season with a staggering $219 million loss.
In conclusion, FC Sevilla is taking drastic measures to repay its debt by selling or trading its entire starting lineup. The club’s new sporting director is actively seeking deals with other European teams, with the aim of assembling a competitive squad for the upcoming season while also addressing the financial issues facing the club.