Sevilla’s Jose Maria del Nido announced a first loss of €15m during his tenure at the club but was still voted back in last night as President.
The announcement at the annual meeting had been expected for a number of weeks and is the first in the 10 years of Del Nido’s reign at the club.
“I present the worst economic balance in all my appearances here. The economic stakes to take Sevilla to the top have been very risky, despite the lower income.
“The deficit of €15m is the direct result of several causes – the elimination from the Champions League against Braga [in the 2010-11 play-off round], and from the Europa League against Hannover [in the 2011-12 play-off round], and the failure to qualify for the Europa League last season.
“I have done wrong, we have not gone the right way, we have spent two years making mistakes and here I am saying it.”
Even so, Del Nido made clear that his ambition to turn around the situation remains, confirming that players will likely have to be sold and that Coach Michel Gonzalez has a specific season requirement to achieve.
“Without selling players we would return to the mediocrity of the past decades and what I want is to continue to aspire to something and not to wander through the League unnoticed. This year we will get into Europe.”
The club’s losses for the year are actually reported at €22.4m by the club, but is listed as €15.2m, with the club having deferred until 2013 payment on taxes owed, in anticipation of a €7.2m profit. This move was criticised by shareholders.
In the last two years, revenue has dropped by 40 per cent, whilst the club’s wage bill now stands at €62.5m.
“We have a well-structured set-up and we have shown that we can continue to run the club. Therefore I submit my candidacy to head the new council. It will not be easy, nor will we be up there every year, so we need maximum support from everyone for the next six years.
“When I came here in 2002, I spoke of the ambition of taking Sevilla to the highest. Now I am in the same place telling you that the dream remains intact. I’ll throw in my imagination to match the expenses and revenues and I remain ambitious.”
Whilst reluctant and having criticised Del Nido during the meeting for some of his decisions, the shareholders approved his budget put forward and 97.2 per cent have voted him back into office.