A football club is no longer just the players it houses, but also the management that ensures the lads bring to the pitch nothing but their best week in and week out.
Add to the mix the importance of the business side of things in terms of commercial aspects, shirt and ticket sales, marketing campaigns, and brand deals, and a modern football side is a conglomerate of numerous important cogs.
However, when one returns to the business on the pitch, the one that matters most is the kind of talents that are brought to clubs. The scouting squad holds the chief responsibility with regards to the same.
Now, Man Utd have lost a valuable asset from their scouting ranks. The Reds’ chief scout and talent-sniffer Javier Ribalta has departed from Old Trafford after having accepted the role as the Sporting Director at Zenit St Petersburg.
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This will be viewed as particularly disheartening by supporters of the Red Devils, as the Spaniard was a brilliant scout, and had joined United after a spectacular spell at Juventus just last year.
When purchased, the move was viewed as a master-stroke on part of the club, and many claimed that United’s transfer setup would be made impeccable by Ribalta.
There was no sinister reason behind the scout’s departure, and that his sole reason for leaving was that the role of a sporting director was far too good to give up, and was viewed as a ‘great challenge’.
The likes of Paul Pogba, Paulo Dybala, Dani Alves, and Alex Sandro were some of Ribalta’s key arrivals during his successful tenure with the Italian giants.
However, it is now certain that the same won’t occur at Old Trafford, and while this may be viewed as a matter of great worry by some, in the grand scale of things, Man Utd is still a club that can attract talented individuals.
But the loss of such a specialist is a loss nevertheless.