Confusing Mathematics Mars Mails' Andre Villas-Boas Pricing Story

WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND - MARCH 03: Chelsea manager, Andre Villa-Boas looks on prior to the Barclays Premier League match between West Bromwich Albion and Chelsea at The Hawthorns on March 3, 2012 in West Bromwich, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

The Daily Mail are running a story today about the amount of money paid out to hire and fire Andre Villas-Boas, claiming a £12M settlement has been paid to the former Chelsea boss and that his total cost, considering wages and his '£10M transfer fee' exceeds £30M. That's a frightening claim, but I'm not sure that the maths adds up.

When Villas-Boas was acquired from Porto, Chelsea paid his full buyout clause of €15M (£13.2M) and signed him to a £4.5M per year (around £85,000 per week) contract. This was reported pretty much everywhere, but since I have a Guardian article open, that's what I'm linking to to support that assertion. These figures contrast with the Mail's £10M buyout clause and reported £125,000 per week wages.

Furthermore, it's not entirely clear why Chelsea would have to pay a 12M settlement to Villas-Boas, as the total contract was worth £13.5M over three years, and he had been paid £3M for eight months of that already, leaving £10.5M left over. I'm no expert on employee compensation and I welcome enlightenment on this point, but I'm baffled as to why Roman Abramovich would agree to pay Villas-Boas more money than he was originally owed in order to allow him to work elsewhere.

So, yeah, this £12M, £32M business doesn't really fly for me. If you're curious, I have the total cost to Chelsea for Villas-Boas' ill-fated tenure ending up at or probably below the £26.7M mark, which is still obviously far too much - but it's bad enough already without extra cash being thrown in there (apparently) at random.

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