Those who despair at football’s relentless and slavish pursuit of filthy lucre look away now. Gone? Good. So what can we tell the rest of you? Well, Real Madrid, never a club to shy away from besmirching what little dignity the once beautiful game has left, has unveiled plans to build a resort island in the United Arab Emirates.
The scheme, which will comprise luxury hotels, a marina, an amusement park, a 10,000-seat stadium, plus assorted Real Madrid sports facilities and museum, will cost an eye-watering $1 billion (£630 million), but we assume club president Florentino Perez has done his sums and will be expected to make that back. With interest.
The plans were launched in glittering style by Perez, who was flanked by a stern-looking club manager Jose Mourinho (still smarting from his team’s draw with Villarreal no doubt), club legend Zinedine Zidane, and players Karim Benzema, Sergio Ramas and Iker Casillas.
The artificial island of Al Marjan is set to open in January 2015.
We imagine Bobby Moore is spinning in his grave.