With Fininvest entering into exclusive negotiations with an unknown Chinese consortium for the sale of Milan, optimistic vibes are permeating from the fan-base for the first time in a long while. The excitement surrounding this potential sale is palpable, and it's easy to see why. The club is floundering in the standings and management has continued to demonstrate that they have no real plan to improve the club's current situation, look no further than "captain" Montolivo's 3-year contract extension. As a result, fans are desperate for a change, and the news regarding the sale of the club appears to be the light at the end of the tunnel that we've all been waiting for. And while it's easy to get excited about the potential takeover, it's important to note that the club is a long way from being officially sold; and while fans may want to temper their expectations following the Bee fiasco of 2015, this time, looks and feels different and for tortured Rossoneri fans, this is worth getting excited about.
One of the biggest problems with the Bee Taechaubol story was that "Mr. Bee" essentially came out of nowhere. He was more or less a total unknown in both football and financial circles, so when he appeared out of nowhere with hundreds of millions of dollars to spend on a football club, more than a few eyebrows were raised. One year later we can basically discern that Mr. Bee was a fraud who was trying to make a name for himself and never had anywhere near the required capital to close the deal. While we don't know the exact names of those in the Chinese consortium just yet, the rumored names range from Guangzhou Evergrande owner and Alibaba founder Jack Ma, to well-known Chinese billionaires Robin Li and He Xiangjian, and possibly even the President of China, Xi Jinping. Suffice to say, whoever is behind the Chinese consortium trying to buy Milan, wealth or reputation will not be up for debate.
Perhaps more important than the names behind the consortium is that the evidence suggests that China is serious about investing in football. The Chinese Super League is asserting itself as a force to be reckoned with, paying significant sums of money for established players such as Alex Teixeira, Jackson Martinez, Fredy Guarin, and Gervinho. The fact that those involved in Chinese football are already spending exorbitant amounts of money on players without owning clubs in Europe is an incredibly encouraging sign, and one can only assume that a Chinese-owned Milan would be an absolute powerhouse on the transfer market.
A Chinese-owned Milan is still a long way off, especially because all of the power lies in the hands of the highly unpredictable Silvio Berlusconi. Despite this, and the fact that Milan fans were burned one year ago by the Mr. Bee saga, fans of the Rossoneri should do their best to remain hopeful and optimistic. Not only does it feel more legitimate this time, the pot of gold that lies at the end of the rainbow could be truly game-changing.