Expectations mount for bank M&A
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Expectations mount for bank M&A

One big deal might kick off a new round of mergers, but the risk of over-paying remains.


Having just enjoyed another World Cup, indulge me and let me talk about football, or at least a football transfer.

This is the story, perhaps apocryphal, of the negotiations behind the scenes in 2005 when Chelsea, emboldened by the wealth of new billionaire owner Roman Abramovich, decided to buy Shaun Wright-Phillips (pictured), a rising attacking star, from the perennially underachieving and financially troubled Manchester City.

Chelsea bid £22 million for the winger, back when £22 million was a lot of money. City wanted the cash but Wright-Phillips had been their player of the year for four successive seasons and had just enjoyed a year of sensational goals and match winning performances that had established him in the England team. So its chairman decided to try and hold out for £25 million by rejecting the first offer.


“Well that’s sad,” Chelsea’s negotiators are said to have told the City camp. “We do still want him. But here’s the thing. Tomorrow our offer will be £21 million. And if you’re still messing us about, then the next day it will be £20 million and the day after that the offer will be £19 million.” 

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