Team Nadal has taken another page from the Roger Federer playbook, with the fifth-ranked Spaniard leaving the IMG agency six months after his Swiss rival did the same and setting up an in-house company to market and manage himself and his million-million-dollar fortune.
As Federer did with uber-agent Tony Godsick, Nadal will do with his mate, former Top 10 player Carlos Costa who has served as his manager for some years. While the ex-racquet wielder might not have quite the shark-like commercial smarts of Godsick, Nadal, his uncle-coach Toni and the rest of his family seem to approve the new arrangement.
Costa had also worked with IMG before parting and taking Nadal with him, The advantage of the new set-up is easy: no painful commissions to pay on future commercial deals still to be negotiated. The new Nadal company comprises Costa and Nadal’s father Sebastian.
Nadal will begin his comeback to tennis after seven months out with a knee injury followed by a stomach virus as he plays in three Latin ATP events this month, in Chile, Brazil and Mexico.
Tennis commentators are already making their predictions about his ability to bounce back after so long out of the mix. “I don’t think he necessarily needs time to be Nadal, but I think he needs some time for the other players to think of him as the old Nadal, because I think players lose a lot of respect: not respect for him as a person, but respect for his level,” Mats Wilander told dpa.
Wilander, who won the French Open three times, even ventures that Nada will be an outsider at the French Open this years due to his lack of playing time. “This is the year of and Novak and Andy’s chance to win the French, and Roger’s already won it, but it’s obviously his chance too.”
©Daily Tennis News Wire