Meanwhile, Die Sueddeutsche Zeitung takes time out to explain one reason why he cost so much even though he isn't blonde.* The second reason is provided by their reporter Raphael Honigstein, who elaborated on the tax situation in this week's Football Weekly Podcast courtesy of The Guardian.
The two reasons:
1. His release clause
Absurd release clauses (well, not this absurd) are uncommon in the Bundesliga, of course. Hence the spectacle of Nuri Sahin deserting Dortmund for a measly 1/5 of what Javi Martínez has just cost Bayern or best-player-of-the-Bundesliga-last-year Rolls Reus (who happens to be blonde!) going for less than one third from Borussia Moenchengladbach to title-holders Borussia Dortmund.
The paper notes that Lionel Messi's release clause is 300 million and Cristiano Ronaldo's is rumoured to be 1 billion - so hands off Manchester City!
Five times Nuri Sahin? I know what you're all thinking: "10 million is one quarter of 40 million, not one-fifth. Honestly, Jenny. Can't you do math?"
LOL bbs - keep reading.
2. The tax situation.
According to man-in-the-know Raphael Honigstein, Javi Martínez is required to rescind his own contract. He can't do this of course because in spite of moon-lighting as an underwear model (continue scrolling for gratuitous pic) he hasn't got a spare 40 million lying around the house. And if Bayern give him the money to do it, it would potentially count as income. In other words: when his contract is rescinded, there will be a tax bill of some 15 million Euros.
What does this mean? That's right boys and girls. By the time Bayern have finished paying off Athletic Bilbao, the total bill could be 55 million Euros.
That brings us to -
3. The WTF will he play question?
No one has the first clue where he will play. A quick review of a dozen newspapers this morning (I read them all so you don't have to!) translates to nothing but confusion. Displace Toni Kroos? Displace Toni Kroos who will displace Thomas Mueller who will displace Robben? Displace Alba? Take over from Jerome Boateng at centre-back (he can play there!)? In the midfield next to Schweini? One thing's for certain (aside from the fact we may never see Anatoliy Tymoschuk ever again), and allowing for the German press's general ignorance of what goes on in the Spanish league, it would appear that not only is he the Bundesliga's biggest purchase of all time, he's also the most expensive utility player of all time in any league.
Here's an article, in German, speculating away - and coming up with nothing
From that article we have a gem (translated by me) from the one man who has nothing to fear in his position, Manuel Neuer: "He was really good [in practice today] and we're pleased he's there...he's very friendly and open..."
Neuer goes on to note (with a smile, according to the paper): "he speaks very good English...for a Spaniard..."
4. Potential Fall-out.
I would remind everyone that the Ultras spent the entire summer bitching about buying Manuel Neuer for 25 million - which represents less than half the final bill - and admittedly for reasons aside from just the sum, but you get my point. At any rate: it doesn't really matter how well he does any more, does it? With a bill that steep - forget highest Bundesliga transfer of all time. Potentially the most expensive defensive player on earth has just arrived in Muenchen.
A final point: Die Sueddeutsche Zeitung (excerpted above) draws an elaborate analogy between this transfer and those that used to be made in ancient times between gladitorial schools before noting that "Uli Hoeness is not, of course Julius Caesar."
Well Jesus. Don't tell HIM that. We're having too much fun here.
*Blondes, like Brazilians, cost more, according to the always hilarious book Soccernomics.