After Samuel Eto'o claimed in a major broadsheet interview that his new club, Anzhi Makhachkala are aiming to emulate the Barcelona model, Barcelona president Sandro Rosell told us "that's funny, because we're trying to emulate Anzhi".
In a candid interview, Rosell explained his vision for how the self-styled 'mes que un club' could go about achieving this. "For starters", began Rosell, "we're going to totally scrap that outdated mechanism by which we're owned by our members and somehow remain responsible to them. To this end, like Anzhi, we're going to find a trumped up gangster-turned-oil baron and flog the club to him. Anzhi have Suleyman Kerimov, Chelsea have Abramovich, Terek have Ramzan Kadyrov and Neuchatel Xamax have that loony Bulat Chagaev. I know that sounds like all the Russian warlords are spoken for, but I'm sure we can find another one".
Another feature of Anzhi is that they play in an impoverished region with the constant threat of attacks by Islamic separatist terrorists. "We will relocate the club to somewhere where we can maximise the difference in the wages of our players compared to the local average, just so the whole exercise looks as grotesque as possible", Rosell went on, "and we'll fly the players in from their gilded mansions in northern Spain for matches and straight back out again in case they have to mix with the hoi-polloi". Our man probed further to see if any locations had actually been scouted and Rosell responded by saying "We've had positive talks with the town of Castleford in West Yorkshire. Grinding poverty, a constant threat of low- to mid-level violence - I tell you, the people of Makhachkala haven't seen anything like this".