Finally the actual football starts again! The EPL and Ligue 1 kicked off last night with a single match day and traders are already looking ahead to the start of the Bundesliga and La Liga on 16th August, as well as Serie A bringing up the rear on 24th August.
Transfer news is dying down a bit too. The English window slammed shut on Thursday so now we wait to see any final moves on the continent before the window finally closes on Monday 2nd September.
All of this means that the focus of traders has well and truly shifted away from youth and transfer prospects and back onto players who have a realistic chance of earning dividends. Great news for two of my three funds, less so for the other.
So taking the bad news first, the Potential fund has well and truly stalled over the last few weeks, despite getting off to a flying start in June. Last week, it just about turned a profit, largely due to the sudden rise on Ismaila Sarr coming off the back of his transfer to Watford. However, this isn’t where I wanted him to be – an average team, harder league, potentially needing time to adapt to it – so I got out at this point, just below break-even at £1.36 per share. Not the best trade I’ve ever made.
Perhaps rashly, I’ve put the money into Takefusa Kubo, rising star at Real Madrid, at £2.09. His price is a little on the high side, given that I don’t expect him to get any minutes there this year. On the other hand, it feels like there’s not too much downside given his high IPO price and buzz around him – plus there are rumours of a loan to Valladolid, which might actually see him get some pitch time. I felt it was worth the gamble.
The Performance fund came in at a solid 1.9% profit over the week. I’ve done a fair bit of re-buying within this fund, just to see whether I can make more in IPDs than I’ve paid in commission. I suspect the answer to that is ‘no’ but I thought it was worth the experiment.
I also sold Mollet at 51p on news of an injury that will keep him out at the start of the season and Lo Celso at £1.88 on his transfer to Spurs. Lo Celso was a difficult one for me – my gut says that he could be a huge performer there – but I felt it was better to get out on a high point and buy back in if he starts to look worth it.
Coming into the fund is Maguire at £2.13 – he ticks a lot of boxes for me at the price. He won MB a massive 26 times last season, plus a couple of PB wins on top of that. The press should be all over him at Man United, whether he performs well or flops, and with the Euros coming up next year too. The new points for aerial duels and accurate long balls could potentially see him competing for a bit more PB as a bonus.
The Premium fund remains unchanged but keeps edging upward, adding around 2.8% to the overall yield during the week, with Sancho and Mbappe the standout performers for capital appreciation. Now that the season is starting, traders will be waiting to see whether they can match those high expectations with some actual dividend yield. Time will tell.
Overall, the three funds increased by around 1.8% last week. The Premium and Performance funds are both sat at around a 13.7% increase since the start of June, while the Potential fund is on around 8.7%. I’ve got a small amount of money left over in the Performance and Potential funds to add in additional players at some point. I’ve updated the funds in full on the individual fund pages so take a look there if you want to know the finer detail.