Friday October 18 2013
Indo Milan

Though the sale of Inter this week has brought to an end the Moratti dynasty, it is a positive change for both the club and Italian football. Frank Tigani writes.

“The times they are a-changin,” once sang Bob Dylan. Lyrics that are perhaps a fitting way to describe recent developments in Serie A. Two-and-a-half years ago Roma became the first Italian club to be bought out by foreign investors. On Tuesday this week, Inter became Italy’s second club to be brought under the control of foreign ownership.

As Massimo Moratti walked out of his offices on Tuesday, he announced: “Everything's been signed.” After 18 years as Inter President, he had just agreed a deal to sell his club. Asked whether he was a bit sad, he responded: “You're not necessarily happy, rather you are relieved to think you've left it in good hands.”

It marks the end of an era in Inter and Italian football’s history. Moratti took over as President in 1995 and under his watch the club went on to win five Scudetti, four Coppa Italias, four Italian Super Cups, the UEFA Cup, the Champions League and the World Club Cup. It was arguably the most successful period in the club’s history since Moratti’s father, Angelo, presided between 1955 and 1968.

As the curtain comes down on the second Moratti reign, one is left to ponder what the future holds for one of Italy’s most storied clubs.

Moratti seems to have every bit of faith in the new management team, headed by Indonesian media and entertainment mogul Erick Thohir. “I am sure they will contribute to a continued string of successes. The new partners' enthusiasm and pragmatism are certainly a guarantee for the future,” he said.

Moratti’s use of the word ‘partners’ is significant, for though he has passed on the baton, “I am not abandoning Inter” he insists. And he is not. Moratti still retains a 30 per cent share in the side so he will certainly be “sticking around”. Only now decisions will not be his own to make. But, considering what the new investors will bring to the table, it is certainly the way forward.

Thohir will first clean up the Inter’s debts – amounting to roughly €200m. Then, the objective will be to exploit the club’s worldwide appeal – particularly in the Asian region where Thohir will continue to reside – by restructuring its commercial and financial arrangements. Plans for a new stadium are expected to be part of this vision, though more will become clear after the first new board meeting on October 28.

In this way, the Indonesian takeover very much reflects that of the American conglomerate at Roma, rather than that seen at clubs like Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain. So any hopes Inter fans had that Thohir’s arrival would trigger a mega spending spree on star players perhaps should be put on hold, for now at least. Moratti, though, has hinted it may not be completely out of the question either. “I don’t think the Nerazzurri fans can really expect something similar to the purchase of Gareth Bale, but then when sentiments and competition with rivals come into it, you just never know.”

Though the spending dried up in recent times, for the best part Moratti was rather spendthrift with his money. Over the years he is estimated to have spent one billion euros on Inter, an astonishing amount of euros. However, looking at where the club is today, it is hard to see where it has all gone. Revenues have hardly been increasing while the club has not won any ‘major’ trophy since the halcyon days of Jose Mourinho’s treble-winning champions three years ago. And this is why Thohir, with his financially savvy and prudent ways, could just be the tonic Inter need to get back on track.

And what is good for Inter in this case, is good for Italian football. Times are certainly changing on the peninsula, but, after years of stagnation, it seems it’s for the better.

Read more from Frank Tigani at The Divine Ponytail

Keep up to date with the latest news and action from Spain's Primera Division with Football Espana - from the team behind Football Italia.

Have your say...
Jose I find it funny how you call it trolling because you can't stomach me hurting your feelings. The extent of your limited cognitive ability is highlighted by you saying I contradict myself and then giving no example. You're one of those people that wants to TRY and sound intelligent but instead fail miserably. Jose was spelt wrong, autocorrect on an iPad. Your second paragraph doesn't even make sense. I think you're just trying to get my attention, it obviously makes your day ;)
on the 22nd October, 2013 at 5:43pm
part 3:

I believe very few in Moratti's financial position would have stayed OUT of the match-fixing, referee corruption and betting scandals through the years in Italy, especially when you KNOW what's going on and and you see that nothing changes from one season to another! This is a true warrior`s spirit. A holy one if you want. This is the philosophy that needs to be preserved and passed ON - in order to keep our historical identity.

on the 22nd October, 2013 at 6:50am
part 2:

Moratti kept the STATUS of this club, the NOBLE AURA that always surrounded our club. It Moratti's diplomatic and grateful personal imprint, that made this club DIFFERENT from all other clubs in Italy, if not in the entire World. Treating the players and the staff as family members. Being always correct and fair-play regarding the Federation, referees and even opponents. This gentleman here kept alive INTER's special DNA!
on the 22nd October, 2013 at 6:49am
I don't even know HOW to thank him from the bottom of my soul for what he did for this club. I never had any football players as a role model, I would rather choose Massimo Moratti as a role model. He always had the full support of our fan base because everybody saw this sincere passion in him - it's like one of our fans had the chance to aquire and run the club! So at the end of the day, we all know he honestly made the choices for the good of the club. He's THE #1 INTER FAN no matter what.
on the 22nd October, 2013 at 6:41am
LOL @ BOSS trying to troll this topic and contradicting himself in the process. Serie B still hurts?

You can only see the evil nature of punished team`s fans when everything should be history but they still pop up like unwanted adware. Pathetic cheaters.

PS: That man's name that was the 1st to win the TREBLE in Italy is Jose, not Joao! Repeat after me: José Mário dos Santos Félix Mourinho.
on the 22nd October, 2013 at 5:22am

I don't need my high intelligence ratified by you. Nor do I require any life lessons from you. Your comment is bizarre, as dominator quite rightly says, where the hell is the link between racism and understanding human nature lol?

You have bitten off more then you can chew coming at me. I make points, I say it how it is and don't bite my tongue. You then respond with absolute nonsense? It's a shame you don't have much intelligence.
on the 21st October, 2013 at 7:44pm
All of Serie A except Juve need new stadiums. Inter, Milan, Roma and Napoli should build 50.000 - 55.000 stadiums and sell out each week while Lazio and Fiorentina should follow Juventus' 41.000 example. Then in five years they can splash out 30 mill for a player again. Juve earn 30 mill more each year because of their stadium.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 7:24pm
Boss, rest assure I don't "wonder" about you.

You are an intelligent person but one that has some work to do in understanding the basics of human nature. I suggest starting with the definition of racism. Then follow up with respect.

I am sure many here, me included, agree with some of your posts but your PR, and allow me to use your words, is "pure stupidity and it irks me".

I sincerely hope my comments will be useful in your life. Best of luck but please don't talk to me again.

on the 20th October, 2013 at 7:14pm
Zoli and the other coward with no name (probably zoli or Oliver)

I can agree to disagree with someone but when I see pure stupidity I address it. It irks me. Zoli I've had to put you straight many times so your response is no surprise. But even for you, racism? Then you wonder why I ridicule you.


Inter won the cl with Joao in charge. They would always win in serie a at the time as there was no competition. Is that clear enough for your simple mind?
on the 20th October, 2013 at 4:29pm

Usually when a person says "I find your comment embarrassing" it means they are irked and wound up.

It's all well and good for you to say I'm clueless about football, perhaps now some fact to substantiate such a statement? What I said was true. Inter only began winning after calciopoli. The fact they were dominated in Europe showed just how poor they were. When Joao came along they finally became decent. When he left they declined. Coincidence? I think not.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 4:22pm
@ Zoli
Your argument contradict each other, hence the true of Zoli's observation on your character.
Read your own post and answer this: if your argument is true that calciopoli was the only factor that make Inter won in Italia (without quality, since you argue that it was not quality that brought Inter to its top spot but rather calciopoli wiped out its contenders), how come in the same statement you cite the fact that Inter also won Champions League?
on the 20th October, 2013 at 3:10pm
Yep. Dude has no clue, he only trolls the inter news section as he has no life and clearly has no idea about football, indonesia is a massive massive population that loves its football, but boss wouldn't even know the most basic things about the world as he clearly can't even afford to watch serie a let alone keep up with current affairs of other nations, get an education. "Boss" lol,
on the 20th October, 2013 at 12:51pm
To those still not know of Thohir, he is as passionate fan of inter and has supported inter since his childhood. Now that should put an end to all your miserable question. And more, he come to invest to make the club he loves the becoming the biggest if not the best football brand in the world! Forza thohir inter!
on the 20th October, 2013 at 6:23am
In all honesty all serie a fans will be looking foward to what this change will bring. As Inter fan, I couldn't help but wish the new owner will do their best in bringing the best out of this club. The money they bring is for certain crucial especially as more big european clubs began to expand and this is what every big clubs particularly in italy should do or else they will continue to be left behind other leagues! Forza serie a and forza inter!!
on the 20th October, 2013 at 6:12am

Take it a bit easier with BOSS. He proved it many times that he doesn't mean to be rude. He is just a little slow in wrapping his head around the concept of agreeing to disagree, respectfully, without calling someone else names that may see things differently then he does.

These things come with age, same as realizing the meaning of racism.
(" Also, what does an Indonesian know about footy?" )

on the 20th October, 2013 at 4:06am
Who cares when the titles were won they were won games had to be played teams had to field squads so juve weren't there for one year ok but the league wasn't made up of two teams one of serie b quality and the other inter if this the case then juve need to discount last 2 titles as there was no competition then giv credit when due just like credit needs to go to roma for there recent run teams don't always win playing pretty and if there play was so ugly how come they still won.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 11:16pm
inter won titles when all cheating teams where taken out of the equation
on the 19th October, 2013 at 9:01pm

I find your reply quite frankly embarrassing. You obviously dislike Inter very much but I think you should consider what you say more carefully. You come across not as someone who is very partisan against Inter but actually as a person who is utterly clueless when it comes to football and should probably keep their opinions to themselves.

Also, I'm not sure whether you are saying Inter has never had a direction in the history of the club or haven't got one at the moment? Clueless.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 7:49pm

Look I don't mean to be rude, but the stupidity of some of you is incomprehensible. Struggled for direction since Leo? What the hell have you been watching.

Listen carefully!

After calciopoli there was no competition left, the quality teams were taken out of the equation leaving inter to win titles. Jose single handedly made inter UCL champs. Before and after Jose inter were a joke.

It is very simple. This team has NO direction.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 6:15pm
As an Inter fan I'm still not sure exactly how I feel with regards to the takeover.

On the one hand Inter, I would argue, have struggled for direction since Leonardo left the club and hopefully the introduction of Mazzarri and a new owner can help focus the club and bring about greater fortune for the club.

On the other hand I'm struggling with the idea of an owner who has no links to the club. I think I'd rather have a millionaire fan running the club than a billionaire business man.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 5:02pm
"one of Italy’s most storied clubs."

That, right there, is just as much as a joke as the one Agnelli made on Facebook recently:

"Heard that Indonesia's capital has been changed from Jakarta to Jakartone"

Inter = joke.... Storied Italian club ?? LOL
on the 19th October, 2013 at 2:11pm
I agree with BOSS in this count...
We can not expect Inter to rise to champion overnight. They have to adapt, they have to change before they back on track.
But there is a way though: follow Juve way. Put Luciano Moggi or somebody who work like him in a certain position in the club, give him a couple million and let him does his wonders..... eh?
on the 19th October, 2013 at 12:54pm
@francesca and mee

Yes both I have seen Roma since they were taken over. They were in the CL before they were taken over and post takeover they have never returned. Also they have no trophy to their name. What a successful takeover LOL

With abromovich and the sheikh they are billionaires, they don't need to know anything about football. Inter won't get more money it will be a like for like replacement. Mark my words, inter won't be winning the scudetto for a very long time or any other trophy
on the 19th October, 2013 at 10:52am
Haha Im indonesian and Im laughing about inter selling their share to them. Good things hopefully we wont see Moratti face anymore LOL. Well at least it's not my team hahahahahaha
on the 19th October, 2013 at 3:26am
To BOSS: what does Indonesian knows about footy? Do u think Abramovich of chelsea, the Americans of ManU or the Sheik of Man City and PSG are an expert of football??

The thing is Inter need a management that can provide them with money and bring new revenue. As in football area the idea of bringing back Leonardo will answer it.

And BOSS, u think Roma project fails? Maybe u should watch serie A more often mate.
on the 18th October, 2013 at 8:50pm
@ BOSS. AS Roma have just won their eighth match in the Serie A and are leading the table. It seems the American project there seems to be working quite well I think. Just saying!
on the 18th October, 2013 at 8:48pm
Anybody seriously thinking a takeover by another clueless broke president is naive.

A takeover is only worthwhile if we are talking billionaires. No point swapping one millionaire for another millionaire. Also, what does an Indonesian know about footy?

This will fail just like the Roma project. Don't expect any big players arriving.
on the 18th October, 2013 at 6:10pm
I hope Inter will improve and come back to the top of the world. Forza Inter !!! Good luck to you Erick!!
on the 18th October, 2013 at 5:15pm
Sounds like a good project. But I don't see where they'll fit in as a top club with only 3 CL places.
on the 18th October, 2013 at 5:02pm
on the 18th October, 2013 at 4:55pm

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