West Ham United have been the subject of persistent takeover rumours recently but would it be a case of better the devil you know regarding one of them?
According to the likes of The Daily Star, former Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool director of football Damien Comolli is leading a US-based consortium looking to buy a Premier League club.
And West Ham have been mentioned as a potential option.
The report came amid speculation over a West Ham takeover from a number of different sources in recent months.
Former Tottenham DoF Comolli left Spurs under a cloud after a nightmare season back in 2008.
Comolli has questionable record at Tottenham and Liverpool
After overseeing an outlay of £170m on players over three years at Tottenham, the Frenchman was sacked along with manager Juande Ramos with the Londoners bottom of the Premier League table.
Comolli became something of a hate figure among Spurs fans in the weeks leading up to his departure. It was, in part, due to the perception that he had lavished vast sums of money on players who had largely failed to justify their price tags.
It was a similar story during his spells at Saint Etienne and Liverpool. Although during Comolli’s time at Anfield he had a hand in the signings of Luis Suarez and current captain Jordan Henderson.
A growing number of West Ham fans have been campaigning for unpopular co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold and their vice-chairman to leave.
The hashtag GSBOUT (Gold Sullivan Brady out) is widely used by West Ham fans and has regularly trended on social media.
Would West Ham want former Spurs man involved in takeover after Football Manager admission?
But would West Ham fans really want former Tottenham and Liverpool man Comolli involved with them after he revealed he uses the video game Football Manager to help him assess and sign players?
Comolli is currently the president of Ligue 2 side Toulouse. And speaking in an interview with 20 Minutes, Comolli bizarrely indicated he intends to see the club’s player recruitment strategy be informed by the popular video game.
“There are a lot of clubs that are using it. It will not be a central pillar of our recruitment strategy but it could help. The size and ambitions of the club have nothing to do with our desire to use data or not. Take the example of the two finalists of the Champions’ League last year, Tottenham and Liverpool: they were built using data.
“Leipzig, semi-finalists of this Champions’ League, work on data. Lorient, who were promoted, the club has someone responsible for data.
Better the devil you know regarding reported Comolli-led takeover interest?
“Football scouts make observations on the pitch. Then, they send those reports and we verify them with data. Or we query a database, which produces players for us who follow certain criteria, which we then ask scouts to verify. It works in both ways. All recruitment is done thanks to data confirming what scouts see. The best way to recruit is to mix them both.”
Ironically the use of Football Manager and FIFA to draw up a list of transfer targets is an accusation often levelled at Sullivan.
It emerged as a jibe used by fans to criticise the Sullivan and Gold regime. It came off the back of the all too public discussion of West Ham’s transfer business and targets by Sullivan’s sons, Dave and Jack, in previous seasons.
So perhaps it is a case of better the devil you know with regards Comolli’s reported involvement in a consortium sniffing around West Ham.