American vs. Russian, the Arsenal Cold War

OK, the handkerchiefs are knotted in each corner, string vests ironed, Wellington Boots packed. We’re hitting the beach so here is a guest post from Miami Arsenal, enjoy and debate nicely.

The papers are having a field day with the language of the men fighting for control of Arsenal FC, but who are these men and what are their personal ambitions for a club stepped in tradition.   I think Michael Buffer said it best with “Let’s get ready to rumble”.

In the white corner stands Enos Stanley ‘The Man” Kroenke, a reported US$2.6 Billion worth (Forbes 2011) and owner of Kroenke Sports Enterprises.  It should be noted that all of his sports assets are in the name of his son Josh to ensure compliance with NFL regulations where an NFL owner (St Louis Rams) cannot then own sports franchises in other markets (Colorado Avalanche, Rapids, Mammoth and Denver Nuggets).

In the red corner we have Alisher Burkhanovich “The Usurper” Usmanov, a reported US$17.7 Billion worth (Forbes 2011) making him the 35th richest individual in the world.  Usmanov has majority shareholding in Metalloinvest, Kommersant, MagaFon and Digital Sky Technologies (Investment Fund) to name but a few.  Usmanov is the current president of the FIE (the international body governing fencing) and finally his firm Metallonvest is the shirt sponsor of Dynamo Moscow.

The mega buy out of English Football continues to this date unabated, the game now a growing international toy for the super-rich.  As fans we have watched with both awe and condemnation the actions of new owners as they have invested heavily in their toys.  The game may not have changed much in the years past, but the way the game has become global has and with such renown comes the carrion feeders looking for their pound of flesh.

It is often said, Arsenal is a self-sustaining model of Football and Economics perfectly married.  The Arsenal board in conjunction with the careful stewardship of Arsene has created a map by which many clubs have looked on with envy. The recent final sales of in the Highbury development have closed a chapter for the club, but where to from here?

I don’t believe there is much scope to expand upon the plans under Stanley Kroenke due to his straight forward pragmatic dogma on sustainability (looking no further than the aforementioned Kroenke Sports Enterprises).  That said, maybe Stanley can surprise me; forgive me if I don’t hold my breath.

Where to begin with our want to be comrade Mr. Alisher Usmanov.  A road is not often straight, that could be perfectly used to describe the history of the name we best know from the creation of his vehicle ‘Red & White Holdings’.  As previously stated, Mr. Usmanov is not short of a quid or two but is he the name to lead Arsenal in to a new era?

As it stands Stanley is in the driving seat, his share acquisitions from board members has driven him to the point where now he has triggered the mandatory takeover procedure but Alisher is not about to budge.  The scene is being played out in the media, and of course it should this is public information and thus dissemination via those in Fleet Street is a must.  What makes it delicious is that it is the last ‘Big Club’ under the microscope and one steeped in tradition.

There is a fundamental question here that remains shrouded in the darker recesses of those fabled Marble Halls, “was it right to favor one suitor over the other?”  It plays out almost like a dying wish, the board knows something has to give and rather than play with both parties to see who would do Arsenal best they have instead chosen a successor based upon their own agenda.

Usmanov, unlike Kroenke has from the start been cast in the role of Dick Dastardly the villain looking to tie Arsenal to the rail way tracks as the looming locomotive steams in.  The question we must all ask ourselves is whether the motives the Arsenal Board have used to write this script are indeed in the best interests of the club and the fans.

Mr. Usmanov, not unlike other Oligarch’s made a substantial fortune with the fall of the Soviet Union.  This piece of information has been used against the man, but where do you think Roman acquired his wealth before the acquisition of the Chelsea FC?  Are we right to question a man on the assumptions of others?

I know a great many supporters that would love to see a cash injection, Usmanov is the only man of the two interested parties in Arsenal capable of adding the kind of immediate investment many cry out for.  Let’s be honest, 100 million quid in a kitty and 3 superstars arrive… whose name are you shouting from the top of your lungs as Arsenal win 4-0 over Manchester United at the ‘Theater of Dreams’!  It could happen, immediate investment has worked for Chelsea, Man City so why not Arsenal?

Let the man bring his tank, fire those 10 pound notes and declare we have arrived.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on June 21, 2011, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 197 Comments.

  1. Can this 2 billionairs give out enough money to sign quality players.

  2. I never post on here but I just wanna say thank you Yogi for a great fkn blog. Love reading your stuff every morning.

  3. I only buy free range chicken. And I always try and recycle. Ethically I cannot support Usmanov.

  4. “Football is not a supermarket”. We’re classier than Chelsea and Man City.

    Immidiate investment might aswell fail.

    I dont know how u define a superstar, but 3 Kakas is really not what we need and they wouldnt bring us a 4-0 victory at OT. Although I’d really love a Schweinsteiger kind of a guy in our team.

  5. You wouldn’t only buy three superstars. You would change the philosophy presently behind the running of the Club. Money would be king and the loyalty that we demand from our players would disappear. I actually enjoy reading about our young players coming through and am pleased when they make the first team squad.

    Chelsea have been aggressively acquiring young players for their academy but, the Chelsea philosophy of buying instant success and sacking managers who do not provide that in the form of winning the Champions League in their first year means that the manager never dares to give the youngsters a chance.

    Usmanov has no interest in Arsenal as such. He will want to make money out of his investment eventually but firstly wants to buy this toy at any price because he never learnt that you can’t win everything. I admire the Board’s decision to lock Usmanov out by engineering the sale to Kroenke being the lesser of two evils.

  6. A Cahill, a Hazard and a Benzema please mr Uzmanov 🙂

  7. Perhaps a Buffon,a Baines, a Barton and a Gervinho to add to the squad depth too 🙂 Ta very much hehehe

  8. Thanks for the article, but I just can’t agree.

    In a few years time, when they finally work out how to enforce FFP, there will be a star next to Chelsea and Man City’s (one cup in three years, is it?) achievements.

    It also seems to be that if you buy a group of superstars over a short space of time, like Chelsea, City, Real Madrid and even Racing Club de France in the 80s, your best hope of major success – because the owner wil simply demand it – is to build a strong defence, play it safe and rely on pieces of individual magic from your most expensive players.

    So in one fell swoop we’d lose two ingredients of our identity: stylish passing football and sustainability. The first is relatively new, but of great value, and the second goes back almost to the foundation of the club. Not only that, there wouldn’t be a worse time than now, with Financial Fairplay rolling in.

  9. I think his interest investment wise is the same as most, TV rights. One look at his portfolio shows an expanding interest in TV and a look at Real’s income growth via it’s own broadcast rights shows the attraction.
    So it would be in his own interest to secure Arsenals success and growth.
    Funny looking fella though!

  10. Excellent article, but I have to disagree with your assertion that “Usmanov, unlike Kroenke has from the start been cast in the role of Dick Dastardly the villain “..
    It was Kroenke who was first cast in the Dick Dastardly role when David Dean, then a board member and major shareholder, attempted to get the board to agree that a cash injection from outside was needed and introduced Kroenke as the man he favoured. For Dean this was the wrtiting on the wall and then he was ousted from the board. Our chairman, Peter Hill-Wood, then uttered the famous quote referring to Kroenke “we don’t want his sort here”.
    Thus began the battle and then Dean, sacked from the board for daring to suggest a Chelsea-like cash injection is needed, sells his shares to Usmanov in the from of Red and White Holdings and then becomes their chairman. Red and White (Usmanov) then begin their assault on the shares.
    What happens next is conjecture but the way I see it is the board seeing the possibility of Dean returning in charge of Arsenal who looking for a way out get pally with Kroenke as ‘the lesser of two evils’ and commence their support of him openly. It was always ‘touch and go’ at the start but with the boards support for Kroenke there was to be only one winner.
    And now? Personally I can’t see how you can keep Usmanov away from his right to a seat on the board and with his financial muscle I can’t see how Kroenke can keep hold of his shareholding indefinitely. So will he sell and make a very decent profit from his dealings with Arsenal or will he become an Arsenal lover and maintain the staus quo? Only time will tell.

  11. Usmanov claims he loves arsenal which is something Stan never has said. do I believe him? I don’t know and would I want the chelski style if management running our amazing club? No not really! Yes we all crave success but at what cost?

  12. I would rather keep Usmanov away from the club. We have a self sustaining model (of a club), which now appears to be even more important as FIFA seem to be attempting to put an end the the sugar daddies of this world. Why should we jump on board now?

    Additionally, Usmanov would be of no value to the club whilst Arsene is the manager anyway. Wenger believes in our model and would no go on a mad spree spending what the club do not have. Things are on the right track, and I for one would like us stay on that track. In all honestly even with Usmanov on board, we would still be be able to compete with City (financially) anyway.

  13. Hmm. I dont agree at all. Your reasoning for not liking stan was also very flimsy. Thanks though.

  14. I think it is in the interests of the club that these two major shareholders get around a table and try to work out what is going on. On the rafik this morning it is claimed Usmanov has once again upped his stake in the club. Let’s face facts we know very little about either’s intentions. Kreonke seems to be a sporting man, but a sporting businessman whilst usmanov is obviously mega-rich and claims to be an Arsenal fan it’s all a bit messy and needs smoothing over.

  15. what happens when the money runs out, Can’t people just look far into the future. And by the way what has money done for the likes of Chelsea and Man city

  16. Immature, ill thought out rubbish. If you delved below the surface and took the whole context of football into account you would realise that this instant ‘flash the cash’ mentality is the worst kind of short-termism imaginable. If that is what you desire – chelski and man c are out there crying out for supporters. It would not be Arsenal if we went down that road and where would we be when the criminal has tired of his toy and moves on leaving us mired in debt?

    Enjoy the beach Yogi, but if this is the quality of substitute we can expect while you are away, I think I’ll pass.

  17. Timmy asks what happens next? I am a passionate believer in the Arsenal Self Sustaining model, but I think there is a great danger that it will end and we will become like all the others.

    I really do wonder if Kroenke is in it for the love of the club. If he isn’t then it is not difficult to see him being seduced by a very large bid from Usmanov and we will be in a situation with a shareholder with over 90% of the shares thus triggering a full compulsory buy out of the remaining shares and there will be nothing that we can do about it. I hope this doesn’t happen but there is a very real danger that it will.

  18. The world of AFC now caught in a cold war rerun: and again we side with the Americans. Why, because their interests seem to coincide with ours.

    If that is proven to not be the case, we can of course always change our allegiances (such was always history). However, at this point I cannot see why a desire to side with the Uzbek/Russian should take precedence: apart from a get fame quick scheme.

    An interesting article whose perspective I cannot accept at this point.

  19. YW

    Thanks for worrying the life out of me! I don’t think Kroenke will sell out anytime soon, but we cant hide from the fact that it is a possibility. Kroenke looks as if he wants to build and develop the Arsenal, carrying on a self-sustaining business model. I believe this is true and I think the board were won over very quickly because of this. Usmanov on the other hand does business the ‘dirty’ way, throwing out comments to destabilize the board, shareholders, upset the fans and make us believe he isn’t in it just for the money. Any businessman can see our club is a very attractive investment, Usmanov is no different, but I can imagine him not giving a toss about what state he leaves our club. Possibly demanding certain player transfers ( eg. Shevchenko, Torres), sacking managers left right n center, and completely fucking up our footballing and business model which has kep us at the top.

    We could be another Citeh. I hope Kroenke and the board are doing their bit to ensure this never happens…

  20. what has money done for amn city and chelski?
    have you really been watching the premier league for the past 5 years?
    City, perennial relegation candidates…. every season they had to fight relegation.
    Now, title challengers!!
    Chelski, they were a team that was just there…finishing in top 5 an achievement. Bring in the money, look at the number of titles they won, the amount of success they achieved!
    So just because we want to be ”ethical” we sacrifice our chances of potentially winning a few titles?
    People in the future are going to look back at the past and say, this team won this number of titles, they are not going to say this team stayed ”ethical” while all their competitors broke all ethical rules!

  21. Jabba's delights

    I think Kroenke should be given time as i admire our self sustaining model, however i dont dislike Usmanov and actually like some of the thing he says.

    He is correct in that we have our sponsoship deals coming up for renewal and some major investment now would see us have a much better chance of securing fantastic long term deals later.

    The board and Wenger need to get a move on this summer. We as yet havent sold any of the players who need to be moved on and we havent signed any of the 3-4 starting quality players we need thats even before we discuss Nasri and Clichy. We are as quick and agile as the titanic in these types of situation.

  22. I agree with Bernard.

  23. And OOU. Well said, both.

  24. Last Of The Country Gentlemen

    @ Rocky Jay

    I think do remember ‘unethical’ behaviour in sport – from the recent scandal in Italy (and further back the accusations against Inter in the 60’s) right down to doping offences. It absolutely does taint any victory.

  25. good blog.. always enjoy them..
    A friend of mine is dating Alishers daughter.. and to be honest i have to question his ethics as she looks like … well lets just say shes not going to be winning uzbekistans next top model.. never the less. very nice girl and attends 90% of our home games.. Is absolutely in love with the club and by all accounts so is her Dad.
    Whos to say what he would do if he gained control . I most certainly do not know. However what i can gather is that their is a genuine love for the club. His quotes in the press are always positive and to be really honest i couldnt give to hoots where his fortune came from. Its not like he needs the club to leverage money against for another business venture. Hes massively liquid.. So financially it would enable us to compete..
    All of the mud slinging is to enable the muppets sat on the board to keep their positions as long as possible..
    everybody bar none is guilty of accepting ill gotten gains in some form at some stage in their life.. on what ever level ..
    Where it be Oil metals mining .. Saudi Russian Uzbek.. they all exploit there country.. the game has changed and so has the way people invest into the major vehicles..
    Financial Fair play.. pheewff..
    you think they wont find a way to account round it.. they will have some dodgy offset..
    So move with the times or get left behind..
    Why cant they work together .. and have Dean holding the reins.. Hill wood is a pratt. and needs to be door stepped.. bit harsh just put him in a home somewhere. i image preferably with a sea view..
    Why is it such a big deal to ‘hold on the illusion’ of been a club that is owned by the fans.. Fan share is such smoke screen… makes no difference.. we have virtually no say now.. you think we will have less if someone takes over…
    There will be no massive £30m signings unless the board change.. Im not saying they havent done a good job but balance it up ..alittle less profit and a couple of dream signings..
    Im sure it will not take us off the self sustaining project path.
    yawn.. another summer of bidding half money for players..?
    who knows..
    I wonder is kronke has a daughter.. i might try and get in.. no more lower tier for me.. im going straight to the diamond club.))

  26. “everybody bar none is guilty of accepting ill gotten gains in some form at some stage in their life.. on what ever level ”

    Just have to say, this is one of the worst type of argument. It’s utterly insiduous and I urge people never to use it.

  27. Sorry to say this, but this is how the world has become. You have the 1% of rich americans, you have the 1% of rich russians, plus a few rich arabs and indians. What can they do with their money to offset tax liabilities……… invest in a sports team, doesn’t matter if that is basketball, american football or english football. At the end of the day, the only thing that is important to these people is MONEY! They may secondly want their teams to win something, but the basis is money.

    Abrovchelski wants Chelsea to win trophies, but does he go about it the right way, sacking his managers every 1 or 2 years! Arsenal are not like that and I hope we don’t go down that route,

    Silent Stan and Usmanov are business men, the only thing they will do to the àrsenal is ruin the club and bring it up to the level of Citeh and Chelski, I really don’t want that. As far as I’m concerned they can both fuck off back to the states and russia. We don’t need this in English football.

  28. Stingy Manager, Wenger and greedy Board are taking Arsenal FC down the drain. Mr. Usmanov, please come to the rescue – procure for us Gary Cahil (CD), Radamel Falcao (CF), Chris Samba (CD), Hugo Loris (GK) and Goklan Inler (CM).

  29. @gadet.. seem to have missed the point of the post entirely…

    Its tounge n cheek….

    wake up

  30. Alex Ice Cream

    Self-sustainability is a term that has meant mediocrity and further fleecing of supporters and has clearly not provided enough funds for the team to be successful. Dein was right when he felt that the Emirates would not produce enough cash for Arsenal to be competitive-which means winning not being also-rans.

    People talk about renegotiating our cr@p commercial deals like they are the solution to our money woes but they won’t be.

    Those who think that the Fair Play Rules will make much of a difference are naive – clubs will find ways round them. Since when has any idea from UEFA been a good one?

    I don’t know much about Usmanov and I certainly don’t trust him but I don’t see Stan investing much into the club. I am not confident that we will have he means to compete under this self sustainability.

  31. Look again, Luke. My PSA focused solely upon that particular type of argument – not the content, not the context. I just felt the need to illustrate my disdain for such type of argument, because, well, fuck that type of argument.

    As such I think I can safely say I am awake, although this morning as I showered I did find myself pondering the remote possibilty that I am in fact still asleep and just experiencing a particularly vivid dream. There are certain things amiss with the day today.

  32. lol fair enough

  33. Gadget if this is your dream your imagination sucks!

  34. I don’t doubt that Chelsea, City and Manure have plans for FFP, but do you honestly think they’ll be able to carry on as they’ve done up to now, AIC? Seems unlikely, I have to say.

    I mean the very fact that City and Chelsea are willing to triple Steve Rowley’s wage this very summer (on the eve of FFP) suggests that they know they have to change, and try to develop their own players.

  35. “to be competitive-which means winning not being also-rans”

    Not the definition of competitive at all, but well it is who it is

  36. I also cannot agree with the final thought in this article. You mention dying wishes. One of Danny Fiszman’s last acts on this earth was to sell his remaining shares to the lesser of two evils – a single share-holder who had no interest in changing the way our club is run. He couldn’t do much about the way the wind is blowing, but he could try to protect our club from the real threat here, and for me, a supporter who agrees with the way our club is run, that threat is Usmanov.

    Declare that we’ve arrived? We’ve always been here.

  37. ‘since when has any idea by uefa been a good one?’
    I’m no fan of FUFA, or UEFA even. And I know that 1955 was a long time ago, but, um, the er,

    how about the European Cup?

  38. The worst post I have I ever read on ACLF. It’s as if the traditions and ideals that make are club great mean absolutely nothing to you.
    Shame on you and shame on Yogi for hiring you.

  39. Our. Sorry.

  40. Let the man have a wank, jiz on those 10 pound notes and declare we have cum.

    When life gives you lemons, you slice a lemon in two, shove them violently into life’s eyes and rob the bitch

  41. Yikes, talk about tainted money.

  42. steww, nothing wrong with an alternate point of view on the blog once in a while, even if the majority of us disagree. We’re not facists.

  43. yogi you have made me see the light. kroenke out. usmonov in6

  44. YW tell us the truth… how much did Usmanov’s lawyers pay you to write today’s blog?

    The thought of Alisher Usmanov becoming the owner of my beloved Arsenal, makes me sick to my stomach.
    The guy’s a Man utd fan for God sake!!

  45. I like the current arrangement. Its a balance between the conservative, safety first approach, and the bolder, more ambitious-and-thus-higher-risk approach, with the former currently having the upper hand.

    I hope it stays that way, or better still, I hope Usmanov is able to reach the 30% threshold, where he’s able to bring some kind of pressure on the club without actually having any real control.
    It means we should still be sustainably and prudently run, but not to the point of complacency (e.g. ‘4th is a trophy’ kind of thinking).Its a win-win situation for me.
    With Usmanov breathing down their necks, the board will have to put more pressure on Wenger to spend what he does have.

  46. dukeg/Fredrick, wrong author.

  47. FG,
    If you’re reading this, thanks for that FT link yesterday. A very informative read indeed.

  48. Debate is healthy. Everyone is entitled to present their views.

    As much as Usminov is vilified, I am just as worried about ‘silent’ Stan.

    The Walmart family and influence has done as much to destroy middle class America over the last 40 years as any other institution, political ideology, or corporate manipulation. ( just my observation)

    KSE sports investments are ALL going nowhere teams.

    What I admire about Arsenal (as much as their style of play) is that the club has character.

    Will the club be forced to change its character based on new ownership?

  49. Sorry Miami, but I have to say no thanks.

    This idea about having a sugar daddy is fucking ludicrous! Why, after all he shit the club have been through, the financial pain, the effort and hard work in making th move to Ashburton Grove, would we then, when we are finally seeing the benefits of that move, would we even entertain the idea of taking sweeterners from that odious c*nt Usmanov? (Even if he wasnt odious, it’d still be a NO)

    Sorry, cannot go along with anything from today’s post.

    Oh and DukeG, it aint Yogi mate! 😀

  50. Arsession

    I’d rather neithr were involved in any way at the club, but Stan was obviously held in higher regard. Perhaps the lesser of 2 evils? At least he has sports club experience. As for Walmart, hats more Stan’s wife I thought? I think Walmart are a hideous slave labour using conglomorate, a bit like our very own Tesco! BTW.

  51. The chavs have spent about £15m getting rid of their last manager, Ancelotti and are about to spend that amount buying out their new manger’s contract at Porto. So, before they even sign a player, they have spent close to £30m. Yep, tha sounds like the way to go for us.

  52. Apparantly Cesc is doing al he can to engineer a move to barca. Yep, he was interviewed about 10 different times at a Spanish commercial event and he said he was desperate to sign for barca this summer to each interviewer. Oh wait a minute. He said, repeatedly that he was happy at Arsenal and not once mentioned signing for his boyhood club.

    Yep Sr Rosell, Cesc is definitely pushing for that move isnt he?

  53. @ Dexter
    Its the silence from and about Stan is troubling.

  54. Have to feel for Cesc having to fend off the same questions day-in day-out.

    The media are like your new girlfriend’s dickhead father. If you don’t humour the prick he’ll talk shit about you.

  55. The barca guy Rosell said “Guardiola knows the values of players and Cesc’s is less than 40 million (euros). Barcelona will offer less and if they (Arsenal) don’t accept, then he won’t come. Pep knows the club is not well-off in terms of money.” Rosell

    That is a statement from a person who is either naive or simply idiotic. Guardiola should open an international valuation office were player get valued before sold by their club. Stupid really. You go to a shop to buy shoes that you like but you don’t like the price what do you do? you bugger off. That what you do Senor Rosell. Arrogance and stupidity mixed all in one.

  56. Sorry you could not all like, or agree with my position. I am also sorry to those that feel that my arguements for Stan were to flimsy or weak.

    Asking questions like “what has money done for Chelsea or Man City?”, is just flat out silly. Both teams finished higher than ourselves this season, both teams have more squad depth for injuries.

    The Finanical Fair Play rules may seem like the ‘bollocks’ at the moment, but truth be told it has been watered down to the point that the impact is not going to be what people thought. The rich clubs well stay rich, the weaker shall maintain their respective position and so the league shall roll on.

    Finally, regardless of whom you choose to throw your backing behind, both are we expect returns from the club in some way shape or form.

  57. Miami Arsenal

    I wonder how annoyed us fans well be in the Spuds actuall did sign Cahill?

  58. Arsession

    I think he has said a fair bit already. asically he wants the club to stay thesame; elf financing with PHW as Chair and Wenger as manager. So, nothing new there really!

    Miami

    Hey mate, well done on putting up a good post, regardless of my opinions of it! As for Cahill, I wouldnt be too fussed if the souds got him, Im not 100% sure he is the CB we need. Ive always felt hat Samba would be a better option, but not at the £12m the tabloids are suggesting.

  59. Miami Arsenal

    thanks Dex

    I personally think we’ll have a tough time over the Samba negotiations because Manchester United already acquired P Jones early in the window. It is not a lie that Blackburn won’t be interested in selling another star before this season starts especially in the Defensive line.

  60. Considering Cahill was at the centre of a defence that conceeded 13 more goals than us this season I think I could learn to live with it if he ended up at Spurs. We’d just have to keep looking for that 5th choice CB. Or not.

  61. Miami

    We can hardly complain about another club wanting to hang onto their better players now can we!

    Markus

    Loved that girlfriend’s dad analogy before dude!

  62. If we are talking here about the lesser of two evils, then the damage to our club has already been done hasn’t it? But the thing is, is that it hasn’t, yet. I believe as soon as Arsene leaves, or is removed, then we are at risk of really being in trouble. This is because whatever manager comes in next will be given money, by one of the evil’s – in order to increase their popularity – to waste. We will also be at risk of having a ridiculous Chelsea style management transfer merry-go-round. The impatient spendthrift fans will have got their wish, at the expense of our principles, of not having to rely on Billionaires for survival. At the expense of our youth system who will not get a look in. And as has been mentioned, at the expense of the style of play for which we are famous for. I would rather be in our position than any other club in the world. Bar none. Long may it continue. We should continue to spend our money responibly whoever is in charge and sustain ourselves from revenue. This is clearly the future for football clubs at any level of the game.

  63. Miami Arsenal

    Arsenal head to China this preseason in the earnest hope of rising their profile in a market with millions of possible consumers… I get that. I worry about our growth model when the team wins nothing year in and year out, success is key to sustaining and cultivating a larger fan base. I am not saying this is indicative of the US but as I walk around Miami, it is apparent that Chelsea and Man U are the mst followed based on shirts. Now, I do concede that the population base here is almost all Latin American and they are incredibly fickle about support (they only support winning teams).

    Arsenal are fast approaching a cross roads in their plans, economic sustainability must include growth internationally on the back of success on the pitch. I am unsure at present, were new deals to be had with shirt naming rights or stadium or whatever on a bill board that Arsenal are in the same league to compete as Chelsea, Man U or indeed Liverpool.

  64. Miami Arsenal

    China and millions, my bad should have alluded to the billions

  65. Fredrick,

    Is it true about the Sheriff supporting the Mancs?

  66. The sad thing Miami,, ( I also live in Miami) is that based on our previous success and the fact hat we have been a big club ( part of the big two for years. You would think there would be a bigger support over her than for chelsea, but llike you say they are the two most common shirts to see. I play for a saturday league and wont dare wear my arsenal shirt to the grounds. Id get ripped a new one by my team mates.

    O and Steww you really are just a bitter miserable cunt,,

  67. Miami Arsenal

    TimmyT,

    I always wear my Arsenal shirt with pride, perhaps if you see a tall European dude wearing an Arsenal shirt around Bayside you should come say “hi”

  68. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    I agree with Bernard, Passenal, OOU, LimparAssist, goonerandy (shocker!), steww, Dexter, Markus, Frederick and anyone else I forgot thats against selling our soul to the (Red) Devil and wishing for a complete change in philosophy. I pity those here willing to sell out (to a fat Man Utd fan at that) and flush our identity down the toilet for a few trophies. We were so close to winning the league this year it hurt and I’ve got all the faith in the world that Wenger’s philosophy will bear shiny fruits. There is something very fishy about Usmanov, and I trust Fiszman and company rightly sensed that and acted accordingly. All in all one of the weaker posts I’ve read on this site in my roughly 5 years of reading this fantastic blog. I almost had to pinch myself and make sure I wasn’t at Le Moan.

  69. Not surprised that US based “fans” are fickle glory hunters! No offence US Goons! The scousers have won jack shit for years, they still can count on good international support. IF that is what we are after, then the free flowing attractive style we play, plus overseas ventures like the one the club are going on this summer should raise our profiles. Obviously winning helps, but that is smething we have no contraol over. Now, if Mike Riley was a Gooner!

    Dgob, yep Usmanov is indeed a manc loving twat to boot.

  70. Nasri Jones is Steww

  71. Miami Arsenal

    Then there you have it, if we are willing to support the status quo then none of us can complain about the lack of investment.

    For anyone unsure of what you’ll get from Stanley, then check out how much investment has been made by KSE in the franchises owned.

    Dex,

    I can say that here in Miami, I have never seen a Liverpool shirt. I have seen a Bristol Rovers, Rangers and Blackburn one though.

  72. Give it a rest Timothy. No need for the name calling….. Yet..

  73. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    I agree with Mattyboy, too. Nice post. Proper Arsenal. As our beloved Frank would say, what a star you are.

  74. Miami Arsenal

    TimmyT,

    Everyone is entitled to their opinions, I’m not offended. When Yogi asked me, I was only to happy to help him for the period he was away. If others don’t like it, so be it. Opinions are like A******s, everyone has one 🙂

  75. Miami

    Yeah, that kinda proves my earlier glory hunting point dont it! Seriously, Liverpool have large fan bases in asia nd northern europe, always have done. I guess in the states, those keen on English football, will most likely follow those deemd as winners, especially in the sky media.
    Also, the whole point of the current model is we shouldnt NEED investment rom outside the monies we generate, so Stan not bing ready with a blank cheque is neither here nor there. Wenger should have enough money from player sells and funds already in the bank.

  76. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Afraid to wear your Arsenal shirt are you, TimmyT? Don’t let the door hit you in the arse on your way out you cunt. We don’t need timid glory hunting plastics like yourself. The Arsenal isn’t for everybody, and certainly not for the faint of heart like yourself. And if I’m steww your Bill. See I can play that game too!

  77. Miami Arsenal

    It is a good point Dex, the only wrinkle is that an owner of the club regardless of the party will want some return on investment. Football, is not like corporate America, I give you that but Stanley or Alisher will want returns which is always going to effect reinvested funds available.

    I like to think were Chelsea and Man City not sullying the transfer market with silly money that Arsenal have have already used a couple more youngsters but the pressure at the moment is just to immense to see what real fruits our tree actually bears.

  78. “Asking questions like “what has money done for Chelsea or Man City?”, is just flat out silly. Both teams finished higher than ourselves this season, both teams have more squad depth for injuries.”

    It is silly if viewed from one angle but reasonable if viewed from another. The increased capital had an undeniable effect, turning both into title challenging teams. However, the asker of the question may be coaxing his audience in to considering the implications of increased capital for Arsenal.

    Arsenal are a competitive team (proper definition, not AIC’s incorrect one) now, without augmented capital. The influx of cash won’t have a comparative effect Arsenal simply because the starting points are different.

    As we have seen with both Man City and Chelsea, the money hasn’t automatically resulted in trophies. Yes both teams have now won trophies, but such is not guaranteed for the future. In fact, the more cash rich teams (CRT) there are in the league, the less the probablity becomes that one particular CRT will win a particular trophy. As Arsenal are already competitive, and an increase in capital doesn’t actually guarantee a trophy, there is in fact no guarantee that we will become more competitive than we already are.

    The only thing the money will guarantee is that we become competitive in the transfer window. We can make purchases of those with over-inflated prices. We can buy those who everyone knows are on the cusp of that vague world-class category, rather than buy those who no-one yet knows are on the cusp of that vague category.

    I’m not sure if I really need to state why I believe we are competitive but I will do so if asked.

    To me, competiting in the transfer window isn’t that big a deal.

  79. Miami Arsenal

    apologies, should have read

    ….”Arsenal would have”

  80. Thanks for the post Miami. Interesting to get some debate and see the other side of this issue.

    No matter how much we hate the idea its clear that money controls the game. The clubs with the most will be the ones who are the most successful. I think its truly naive to think that the FFP rules will really change anything. Even if it does it will be several years while the rules slowly ramp up. The idea of a self sustaining club is great but realistically I seriously doubt we can continue to compete at the top levels for the long term and continue to be a “big club” if we only have our clubs earnings to invest. Arsene will retire eventually and how many managers in the world will be even able to maintain that top 4 competitiveness on the budget he has used. Self sustainability will not work without miracles from the manager. How many people will be able to find the bargains that Arsene has dug up. Answer is none. We have seen that no matter how beautiful our football that the rest of the world values results. It appears the worlds biggest players already consider us as a 2nd tier club. Those great commercial deals are not going to come our way if we are fighting for 4th every year.

    If we can’t pay wages at least reasonably close to those paid by Chelsea, City, ManU, Real, Barca, Inter, Bayern etc etc then their is no way we will be able to keep our top players. Football is clearly a business for the clubs. You only have to look at the 6% ticket price hike to know that. Its also a business and a career for players and their agents. The idea that we will raise a generation of loyal Arsenal players who will be happy to fight for the badge at 1/2 the wages they could make elsewhere is totally naive and represents the thickest of rose colored thinking.

    In the end I guess its all about your priorities. If the self sustaining model and its moral high ground is the most important thing then more power to you. Myself I hope that can find the sweet spot somewhere between the ManCity model and ours. I don’t want to see a manager fired every year and 20 new players each summer but I would like our owners to be willing to invest some of their own money above our earnings when needed to be able to pay the top earning players market rate and to be able to compete with the other big clubs for recruiting the top players in the transfer market. If we can’t do that I think its inevitable that we will continue to slowly lose our status as a “big club” and become a “feeder club”.

  81. Miami

    Yeah, I make you right. I am sure the boss would’ve blooded a few more kids sooner had there not been so much pressure. Look how he kept Almunia in, instead of trying out Szczesny sooner. I am sure neither Stan or Alice are in it for the thrill of watching us play the beautiful game. Perhpas they are in it for the TV rights that may well be around the corner once the Sky TV rights deal finally comes to an end? Or perhapsthey will want to sell the club at a massive profit in 5-10 years. Who knows?

  82. Miami Arsenal

    Nice, Gadget.

    One issue we must all understand is whether the transfers now are over inflated or not, they are the norm. If Arsenal are for instance worrying about spending 12 mill on a CB or indeed 17 as has been quoted elsewhere, then where does that leave us? We may not like the landscape the game is currently playing in, but digging our heels in the turf and saying “I won’t do it” isn’t getting us further ahead either.

    Your argument is sound, but surely being competitve in the transfer window is not a bad thing right? Money does not guarantee success, I whole heartedly agree but it doesn’t hinder as much as people might like to think. I do agree that with massive investment comes expectations of success, and the manager merry-go-round would not be great for the club were it to transpire.

  83. We have to accept that both of these guys are (seemingly) here to stay. Also, except for the unlikely event that Stan will sell to Usmanov, the current ownership structure will remain for the foreseeable future.

    I’m quite happy with this situation. I don’t know Stan enough to want him to take complete ownership of the club, and frankly don’t see anything in his track record to be excited about, BUT, I still prefer him and his methods over the classless Uzbek.

  84. Of course the transfer market is over priced, but that isnt going to change by us not paying an over-inflated transfer fee. However, the £17m price quoted for Cahill is just nuts! He has one year left on his deal, is not an established International, plays for a team that can hardly be called defensively sound. Liverpool offer £5m for Clichy, yet we need to pay £17m for the Bolton CB?

    That just does not add up.

  85. Occam’s razor would say you’re correct Bill. However, the problem with the damn razor is that if you cut too soon, you miss some of the more subtle but equally salient factors.

  86. Miami Arsenal

    Dex,

    I can honestly see TV deals becoming a huge issue for the EPL with the advent of the FFP changes. If your spending is coming to be conditional on revenues (which is what it is) then teams negotiating individual deals like Real, Barca are at a huge advantage. The likes of Man U, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool are all going to want to set their own deals, because they will generate more income. It remains to be seen what will happen of course.

  87. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Don’t lump me in with those other plastics from the states, Dexter. Look no further than myself, Gunner4Ever, Gainsbourg69 for a few examples of passionate supporters of our model from the states (I’m sure there are many more). I got into the Arsenal through my better halfs family on a trip to North London in 06 and had no idea about the Invincibles or anything football related outside of David Beckham so I’m far from a glory hunter. Since then Ive met many non plastic proper Arsenal supporters here around the greater Los Angeles area as well and can confirm Arsenal are alive and well here on the West Coast. I met one of Danny Karbassiyoon’s best mates on a flight from LA to Orlando after he saw me in my Arsenal top and wanted to shake my hand. And while we may not be as popular as United or the Chavs (wouldn’t want it any other way) I get many shout outs when I rep my teams colors out here the states.

  88. The ‘if you can’t beat them, join them’ attitude is an extremely selfish one and will ultimately put our whole existance at risk. Let alone the impact it will have on the several hundered other clubs that exist in England and throughout Europe! (the ‘have nots’). But I guess the selfish attitude does not require any consideration for anyone else does it, this is sport after all.

  89. To be honest Miami, my concerns are more to do with paying well over the odds simply because the selling team knows you have the money. If it’s a bidding war, fair enough. I have little problem paying for quality, but I do have a problem with paying just for the sake of it.

    It’s a contrast to our capture of Chamakh: we could have paid, Bordeaux took the urine, but they were left stinking when the bag burst.

  90. Alex Ice Cream

    If the amount of money we produced as a club under the self sustaining model was enough for us to buy the players we need then great but it isn’t. In the meantime we have to put up with substandard youths and cheap imports from the French league. I am hoping that we produce more quality players – Sczezny and Jack were brilliant last year as I am not confident that we will buy who we need. I can’t get excited by Gervinho.

    People talk about inflated fees – what about the money we pay to young players who have achieved nothing!

    Self sustaining? Rubbish. The Emirates has made us less competitive in the time we have been there. Hopefully this will improve but as more clubs rely on huge revenues either from billionaire or massive tv and commercial deals we are in danger of being left further and further behind.

  91. Bill,
    Nice post. I agree with most of what you say except for the idea that we can’t realistically compete with the big boys if we remain self-sustaining. Manure has shown that this is possible. They’ve had no problems competing in this hyper inflated transfer market have not received one cent from their owners. The opposite in fact.

    Of course their revenues are much bigger than ours, but there is no reason why we can’t reach their income levels in a few years. We bring in about the same amount of matchday income and the real difference between them and us is in commercial revenue. Liverpool’s recent shirt deal shows that you don’t have to be winning to get great commercial deals.

  92. Gadget:

    Our model of self sustaining and competitive only works now because of Wenger’s genius. Wenger won early in his career by finding Henry, Viera, Pires etc who were relatively unknowns and relative bargains and then the occasional big player like DB10 and stealing Sol Campbell from the Spuds. Even with Wenger’s genius before during those heady days we were still one of the biggest spending clubs in England. The other clubs have ramped up their scouting so its much harder to find great bargains. Even Wenger has not been able to put together a team that can win trophies on the budget we have used in the last 7 years. What will happen to the club on this budget after he retires.

  93. Gadget,
    I’m not sure you can say Bordeaux lost on that Chamakh’s deal. Its very unlikely that they could have gotten a replacement for him for the price we were offering and his goals certainly helped them in his last season, so I don’t see where they lost?

    We on the other hand didn’t get a striker at a time when it could have made all the difference to our season.

  94. Miami Arsenal

    I really want to believe that additonal investment on top of the status quo does not mean we are Chelsea or Manchester City. I have no doubt that there is a medium ground to be had, but lumping in our hopes of future success based on naturally revenue growth is perhaps being shortsighted.

    Bill, agreed. I don’t think it is unreasonable for fans to want their owner to show some faith, determination, ambition being adding a few of their own notes in to the kitty.

    Nasir, you may be some what abrasive but whatever. I can say that having supported Arsenal for the last 34 years doesn’t make me Plastic.

    The last game I got to actually watch at Highbury was the win over Charlton, Henry was lucky not be to be sent off that day for kicking our when he was on the ground and Frannie Jeffers scored… happy days indeed.

  95. Henristic:

    Hope your right. What we are seeing recently for example with Nasri is certainly raising concern. Like a lot of things I think its a matter of degree and the pendulum has swung way to far towards the side of financial frugality and that has really hurt the club. Not saying we should spend ourselves into administration but we have to do whats needed to start winning something soon. Over the long term I don’t see anything wrong with an owner investing some of their own money into the franchise. Its not illegal nor immoral and its the way most successful sports franschises have operated in all sports in all the world for years. We will certainly have a lot more chance of winning those great contracts and keeping those great players if we are winning titles.

  96. Oh do fuck off Alex. Chatting shite, as usual. Substandard youths? Wanker.

  97. Gadget | June 21, 2011 at 2:42 pm
    “Arsenal are a competitive team (proper definition, not AIC’s incorrect one) now, without augmented capital. The influx of cash won’t have a comparative effect Arsenal simply because the starting points are different.
    As we have seen with both Man City and Chelsea, the money hasn’t automatically resulted in trophies. Yes both teams have now won trophies, but such is not guaranteed for the future. In fact, the more cash rich teams (CRT) there are in the league, the less the probablity becomes that one particular CRT will win a particular trophy. As Arsenal are already competitive, and an increase in capital doesn’t actually guarantee a trophy, there is in fact no guarantee that we will become more competitive than we already are.”

    I’m yet to see any reasonable person argue that spending of any kind GUARANTEES trophies. The point, I think, is that spending increases significantly any team’s chances of a trophy. Don’t you agree?

    You raise another interesting point about the relative benefits of spending for teams like us vs teams like Chelsea and Mancity. How can you argue that increasing our capital wouldn’t make us ‘more competitive’ because we are competitive already? That hardly makes sense to me, unless you’re saying we can’t improve further in terms of quality?

  98. Nasir

    Nice one mate.

    Mayyboy

    Check AIC’s whining rant for proof of your point dude.

  99. “Arsenal FC is pumping through my veins,” he said on his Twitter page. “I will never leave Arsenal even if I get released I will beg on both knees to stay they’re going to have to escort me [out].”
    ____________________________________________________________________________

    Thats what I am talking about! If only some of our whiny wanky “fans” had that same attitude eh? Good on you Emmanuel.

  100. Miami Arsenal

    Was anyone here at the Arsenal v Rotherham LC game that ended on Penalties? I recall that night, cold but clear sky. It was the debut of Cesc as it happens and what a game the lad had. I can tell you now he was so small we all wondered whether he would make an impact… history tells us he became a legend 🙂 Wiltord was immense that night to and the penalties were something like 13-12… sorry just remembering the old days at Highbury

  101. Strawman, Henristic?

    He left for free, and so it’s the old question is it better to have some or none? In the context of finances (which is specifically what I was speaking of) Bordeaux lost out.

    Bill, your counter-argument has a tinge of philosophical cowardice to it. Life post-Wenger is an unknown quantity. Can anyone else do what Wenger have done? Unknown. Yes, the unknown is a scary, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to continue the path which we are on. Even if it does end in doom, try is all one can do. And if we make mistakes, hopefully some brave soul will follow our lead, putting our missteps right and correcting our wrongs – preferably in the manner of Dr Sam Beckett

  102. Alex Ice Cream

    Dexter,

    Substandard? Sorry for being kind. How about talentless, overpaid, ungrateful sh1te that we will struggle to offload due to big wages.

  103. Bill,
    You’re right that its not uncommon for owners to spend on their teams. But as Manure shows its not unfeasible either for a team to live within its means, especially if such team have a sizeable local and global fan base.

    Also, I have to admit there’s something more classy about the self-sustaining approach. I consider myself a pragmatist and have no qualms per se on having a high-spending owner for the club, but we don’t HAVE to go that route, not yet anyways.

    Sure things look a little tight now, but its only temporary. Soon some of the current poor deals will expire and we can negotiate new ones. There is also some scope for freeing up funds internally by breaking up the wage structure to allow us pay our ‘stars’ more, and our fringe players less.

  104. Miami Arsenal

    Thanks for the link LA

  105. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    I like your opinion of me and my opinion, Miami Arsenal. I would agree with that. I can get a bit carried away at times, but I like to think my heart is in the right place. And while I may not agree with your views on our clubs philosophy, I respect the fact that you follow this blog and were selected for a piece by the great Yogi’s Warrior. Cheers

  106. Alex

    Who are these talentess youths you speak of? Are you talking about the squad players? The easy scapegoats that cunts like you jump on as they are canon fodder or the doomerswho need somone to blame.

    If you are actually talking about our kids from the youth team, then you are even more pathetic than I thought.

  107. Gadget,
    “Strawman, Henristic?
    He left for free, and so it’s the old question is it better to have some or none? In the context of finances (which is specifically what I was speaking of) Bordeaux lost out.”

    Sorry for assuming that financial issues are to be discussed in a football context on a football blog. Does this mean that you at least agree that Bordeaux did not lose footbalistically (heheh), right?

  108. Miami Arsenal

    Henristic,

    I not sure what to say about the situation at Manchester United. It is a club with a huge debt burden, the buy out was leveraged on debt to the club and yet they always seem to make buys. There is no question that the Ronaldo deal helped but things have to change for them because it is a club that does falls foul of the FFP rules atm. United, unlike Chelsea don’t have a benefactor to make debt disappear so perhaps it is that they are determined to make hay whilst the sun shining?

    Man U transfer deals

    Season Transfers In (£) Transfers Out (£) Balance (£)
    2005/06 19.33m 4.80m (14.53m)
    2006/07 17.01m 15.51m (1.50m)
    2007/08 62.96m 26.89m (36.07m)
    2008/09 32.24m 5.31m (26.93m)
    2009/10 21.11m 85.64m 64.53m
    2010/11 19.83m 12.67m (7.16m)

    Total (21.66m)

  109. Miami Arsenal

    I respect everyone’s view, without debate we never move forward. I may have called you abrasive mate, but in my world that is not a bad thing, forthright could have been used just as well.

  110. Miami Arsenal

    Bollocks, I hate it when it doesn’t sink up!

  111. Miami,

    Thanks for taking the time to write a post from a perspective that is rarely the focus of the daily piece here. And thanks to YW for making it happen. I happen to totally disagree with just about everything you said but the debate has been lively and somewhat of an interesting read.

    It drives me insane to read ill-informed comments on here about the relative success/”bigness”/etc… of the other sports franchises in KSE. First off most of the comments are generalized statements that are absolute rubbish; second, comparing teams in professional leagues with salary caps or luxury taxes or in America is a non-starter! It is pointless. Not all the teams that are part of KSE are rubbish either. The Colorado Rapids won their league last year, the Nuggets are now a playoff team after years and years of futility, and the Avalanche and Rams are rebuilding. That isn’t too bad a record for four teams: one champion, one playoff contender, and two rebuilding. What in gods name is wrong with that!!!

  112. Gadget 2 3:34:

    You are certainly not short on idealism. To continue on our current path is the risky play if our goal is to maintain our status as a “big club” in world football. I suspect we are going to be waiting a long long time if we hope for the day that Chelsea, ManU, City etc go bust. The reward for keeping on the current path is if we win we can stand on top of the mountain and proclaim we have won the right way, but the risk is losing our status as a “big club”. If the former is really important to you as a fan then who am I to tell you what you should want. To me the reward for keeping on that path is not worth the risk.

    Having our owners put some of thier own money in the kitty (within reason of course) and spending that money certainly gives us a better chance to win with or after Wenger. Imagine what Wenger could have done with this team if he had more reasonable budgets and been willing to use the money.

  113. There’s been a lull after the the Jones and Henderson transfers. Without knowing anything about anything, I wouldn’t be surprised if those two deals, having inflated the market horribly, put the brakes on everyone else’s plans.

    There are still a lot of players around with only one year left to run, and a few clubs desperately need the money. If we’re in the market we’ve got plenty of time to let them stew.

  114. Henristic @3:30

    No, I cannot agree that spending increases yet alone significantly increases any teams chances of a trophy. Mainly, because there’s actually no evidence to suggest this is the case, simply because every team has spends money every summer; but also because I believe there are some teams who are good enough to win any given trophy with who they currently have regardless of what their competition do.

    A question to you Henristic: how do you quantify competitiveness?

    I’ve just do it today and i can say it’s not simply about quality, it’s about who you are competiting with. As such, it’s an absolute thing, you are either competing or you are not.

    Was there anyone we could not compete with this season? I would have to say no.
    Did we compete this season, I would yes.
    Could we have done better, I would again say yes, but this is not an area spending can only solve.

  115. Bill, unabashed idealism is what I’m all about. You can let the universe mold you, or you can attempt to bend the universe to your will.

    The universe will learn to bend one way or another.

    Henristic, I see the indignation and I urge you to ditch the snark! In all honesty, I’ve not followed Bordeaux closely, so cannot really make a comment upon their footballing success post-Marou. Have they got an adequate replacement for Chamakh now?

  116. Miami Arsenal

    The worse case for Arsenal is that Stanley decides his buyout is a leveraged buyout, thus Arsenal become the new Manchester United with debt from the acquisition on the club its self. Now, to be fair to Stanley he has stated that this is not going to happen. That said, I am not sure where his cash is going to appear from given the state of the liquidity markets at the moment. Perhaps, it is this reason that Stanley has not been more aggressive in the buyout, though I concede that Alisher is not about to roll over for him.

    Thanks Gris Gris.

    It may not always be possible to compare apples and oranges, but they are both still fruit. The only track record we have for Stanley is based upon his business interests in similar fields (sports). You are of course right that a direct comparison maybe some what unfair where US markets have salary caps, CBA’s and drafts. But, lets be clear earnest while businessmen want a return on investment. Stanley isn’t here because he loves Arsenal, he see a vehicle to invest in to give him a return in the form of profits.

  117. Gadget,
    Of course we competed this last season, but we did it poorly, hence coming 4th.

    Also, I never said or implied that competitiveness was absolute. The word itself suggests relativity, i.e. with those you’re competing against.

    Gotta run now, but will reply to the other points later…

  118. Miami Arsenal

    Damn, Manchester United made a loss of 90 million pounds last year before taxes… and yet they still spend!

  119. Henristic, indeed, I ‘m the only one mooting the absolute nature of competitive and, yes you are correct it is I believe paradoxically relative for the very reason you suggest. I’ll probably catch your response at some stage tomorrow, so there’s a good chance this probably won’t be continued because I’m a one topic a day man

  120. Miami Arsenal

    “No other Premier League club is swimming in as much self-generated cash as Arsenal. They recorded pre-tax profits of £56 million for the year ending May 31, 2010, group turnover grew from £313m to £379.9m and the club are now turning a handsome profit on their Highbury Square development, the flats built at their former stadium.

    Further analysis of the 26-page document shows the club have remarkable cash reserves of £127.6m, which is a £28m increase on the previous financial year. This is a result of the £15.2m profit made by their property portfolio and a £13.6m surplus from player trading, generated mainly by the sales of Emmanuel Adebayor and Kolo Toure to Manchester City.

    The knock-on effect is that Arsene Wenger will have more money at his disposal in a January transfer window than he has ever had before.”

    Exert from Goal.com

    So where is the investment?

  121. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Thanks, man. I appreciate that.

    Up the Gunners

  122. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    I forgot to mention Gris Gris earlier as well when mentioning like minded Yanks. One of the true OG Yanks here I’ve noticed since I discovered this fine blog. Much respect, GG.

  123. Miami:

    A football club is not like the typical business whose goal is to make profit for its share holders. Our goal is to have success on the pitch. We can argue forever about the merits of investment from our owners above our earnings, however, not spending the money we have sitting in the bank is the most difficult thing of all to understand. The players and fans are screaming for investment. To argue that investing that money would not improve our chances of winning is daft at best. What are we saving that money for?

    Still a long way to go in the transfer window and if we really are going to see some significant investment I hope it comes soon so the club can be ready by the time preseason roles around.

  124. TimmyT you are embarrased to wear an arsenal shirt in the US? What a shame. I flew my flag outside my apartment through the entire year and made sure to yell at the dude wearing a man u jacket who would walk by my digs. When I see someone wearing a Manure or chelski jersey I usually holler at them, but we can converse afterwards because we share the passion of football.

    Gadget I enjoy your logic-ness. I took a logic class last semester and ever since then have been seeing how poorly many people structure arguments. I read a handful of informal fallacies on here every day and try my best to supress the temptation to rip their argument to shreds. I guess some people don’t care if they make valid arguments, maybe they just want to push their opinion on others.

    Miami good job writing. I feel like a real outcast supporting football here in the US, i’m glad there are other gooners keeping it real in the US.

  125. Miami Arsenal

    Bill, I worry that the lack of spending is more to do with Arsene’s pragmatic approach to football economics post the Highbury move. It is early in the window and we all know nothing in terms of real targets or the cost of acquiring them, but Arsene can be stubborn. In 2 years Arsenal has cleared all it debts save the 200 million plus still owed on the actual stadium construction, which is due to be paid off 2031. We know Arsenal is a strong model of Football run correctly as a going concern, but why ask fans to invest more, when the club does not follow suit?

    Arsenal has followed a path of investing in youth, this is fine where time is on your side… the question is now, is time actually on our side anymore?

  126. Miami Arsenal

    If you wear the Arsenal shirt you can never be an outcast William

  127. Amen to that Mr. Miami.

  128. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    What’s daft is endless day in day out speculation as to how much Arsenal have in the bank like you have access to that information. The negligence is astonishing.

  129. Miami Arsenal

    You are quite right Nasir, but when the financials stated that Arsenal have a 132 million in cash… people are going to speculate 🙂

  130. Jesus wept. I go away for a few weeks and the first time I get near a computer I have to read this. Is this really what several years of argument has brought us to? It’s like this site never existed. Where is our history and argument?

    Thank goodness for Passenal.

    oh,and as usual AIC, you can fuck off.

  131. Miami,

    Where does it state that? Not that I don’t believe you but just curious.

    Also the 132M in cash isn’t this atificially high due to season ticket renewals and also I am sure I have read that we have to have a certain amount in the bank as part of the t’s&c’s of the loan deals for rebuilding the stadium.

    Again I am not having a ‘pop’ at you but figures get banded about fairly easily without fully understanding what makes them up.

  132. Welcome back CB. I must say I totally agree with you & Passenal (and a few others) about today’s post.

  133. bill “To argue that investing that money would not improve our chances of winning is daft at best.”

    to argue that spending that same money would guarantee success is equally daft.

  134. Miami

    No offence dude, but goal.com? That cant have been the original source of those quotes surely?

    As for the investmnt, I think we will have to try and be patient on that one man. Difficlt I know!

  135. Jabba's delights

    Im of the oppinion that it would be beneficial for our owners to help us out in the short term with investment in order to help out our self sustaining model long term. This statement from usmanov makes perfect sense

    “In terms of doing things differently, let me give you a very clear example. Arsenal has all of its major commercial contracts coming up for renewal in the next couple of years.

    “It’s no secret that to maximise the value of those you want to have success on the field and be winning trophies. To do that you need to invest now in building a winning team. This is simple commercial logic. Whether it comes to pass, we shall see.”

    With regards to Kroenke and his Franchises its very hard to compare. One thing is for sure is that the Nuggets have be playoff contenders for 8 straight years and have managed to get past the 1st round once. Their supporters were crying out for more investment to get them over the top, but what happened was their only superstar Carmelo Anthony left as he didnt think the team would be competative enough nor would he be paid enough.

  136. Usmanov wants to do what Abramovich is doing at Chelsea, it might bring us instant success in the short term, but ruin our long term plans. that is not a model that works so please keep him away from the club.

  137. Stevie G has said “It’s a big statement by the club getting a big signing in early” Apparently spending tons of money on young players IS a statement of intent. Who knew?

  138. Jabba's delights

    I’m looking forward to the day that he gets 30% though will bring alot more clarity to silent Stan intentions with the club

  139. I haven’t read this site since before my guest blog back in May. I assume that most of those that make this blog different and worth reading have all gone away as well.

    Has it all been a waste of time? Is Yogi stirring the pot?

    God Bless Arsene Wenger.

    Arsenal.

  140. JD

    That is pure rhetoric, fluff and easy for him to say as he is NOT in a position to put his money where his fat old mouth is!

    As for the contract renewals for the marketing side of things. Well durrr! Again, hardly the work of a footballing/marketing genius. My nan could have workd that one out.

    His comments were meant to do 2 things;

    Butter up the fans and piss off he board.

    Looks like he’s got your number mate!

  141. Oh Bob, dont be so melodramatic! True, this blog has attracted a few doomers, especially the the first few posts every day, which is weird. But most of the posters you know are still here, as far s I can tell. Apart from Frank.

  142. Jabba’s Delights,

    You cannot compare the NBA and EPL, they are two separate entities. Making the playoffs in the NBA is considered an achievement for most teams. Teams go through a grueling campaign, playing 82 games with 15 man roster, supplemented by players from a developmental league. They also have salary caps in american sports. Carmelo Anthony’s salary amounted to a big percentage of the salary cap so it made sense to get rid of him in exchange for other players who were willing to play for the Nuggets. I don’t support the nuggets but that is how the NBA model works. Rookie or first year players are on a pay scale according to where they are drafted. Teams cannot also go out and just buy all the superstars they want because their salaries would count against the league approved salary cap. Like Miami tried to do, in the end it cost them because they had “no money to spend” under the rules to supplement the 3 superstars with proper hardworking players and had to settle for journeymen basketball players.

    Usmanov is saying all the right things disgruntled fans want to hear, but has he once stated in the media what his short-term and long term plans are for AFC? I don’t think i’ve ever read an article where Usmanov has clearly stated the plans he has for our club. The current board haven’t live up to par, but they can change all that by showing a little ambition. At least you heard it from Gazidis, Kroenke supports the self sustaining model, which this incumbent board also supports. So better with the devil you know than the angel you don’t.

  143. JD,

    What kind of clarity do you expect him to bring to the Silent Stan’s intentions when he gets 30% of shares? Usmanov hasn’t even stated his intentions for the club.

  144. Jabba's delights

    Dexter

    Dexter actually what you say is pure rhetoric. Its also very easy to paint what he says as just words but what is he meant to do, he isnt allowed on the board so what can he do apart from say what he would do????????????????/

    He also asked the rest of the board to put some of their own money up 2 years ago with a share issue………..none said yes.

    I believe him when he says he would invest, i dont see anyone else doing anything at the moment. What he says makes utterly perfect sense and let us remember he is far far far better businesman than the rest of us.

    3 weeks from pre season………………no outs, one youngster in. with our hectic pre season we had better be ready early!!!!

  145. I read somewhere that IF Usmanov gets the 30% he will then have to make a formal bid for the club, he would ail obviously and would therefore have to sell off his shares again, so his stake is under the 30% again. Seems to me that he is just being an annoying twat.

  146. Jabba's delights

    colney

    He has stated he wants arsenal to win trophies in the short, medium and long term.

    If he gest 30% he can demand to see all the financial dealings of the club. He will be able to come clean about stuff that we would never have been able to get close to before.

    50m on ”other costs”???? hmm now we will find out what they are. over one 5th of our revenue goes on ”other costs”??????????

  147. Jesus H Christ JD.

    You really are hard work mate! Why invest when Wenger (you know, the manager?) is the one championing the spend what we make idea? The fact that this cunt crawled out from under his rock the day before the AST meeting had nothing to do with it did it? You know, say how much better things ould be with him in charge the day before Gazidis has to answer to some shareholder ans pissed off after our shite bag season. He has a track record of doing just hat. Making empty promises and well timed (for him) moments.

    Do you not see that his promises of shiny new toys and success is aimd at frustrated fans crying out for trophies? He is messing with your mind man! Dont let the fat cunt scramble your noodle! 😀

  148. Jabba's delights

    colney

    I’m well aware of the differences between American sport and our premiere league. The NFL is my number one sport. The Heat got to the NBA finals for the 1st time since 2006 because of their investment. Look what investment did to the Jets and Saints in recent years in the NFL. Spending money cannot guarntee success but it most definetly can give you a better chance if spent right. One would hope with Arsene that we might do just that.

    Once again though, its a crucial summer all of us know it. The clock is ticking i remember it ticking all the way until the window shut last year with negligible improvements. Hertha Berlin get 15% of any transfer fee for Samba, it basically kills the deal…………….lets stop acting like cretins and get the deals done Arsenal. Alot of the fanbase is restless, the team needs obvious improvements we have the hardest start to a season in a decade.

  149. Jabba,

    Not to get too sidetracked here but after Carmelo left the Nuggets the team was left with a bunch of “role” players who all worked hard, played for the team first, and what was the result? A winning streak and they made the playoffs….again. So what was your point? And around here in Denver if you talk to Nuggets supporters who also supported the team before Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, etc… they are just happy the team is winning more than losing again. There certainly was no vocal cry for more investment from the supporters. The hack media? Now that’s another story. Sadly England does not have a monopoly on hacks.

  150. JD

    Fergie, Twitchy Redknapp nd Satan herself can ll say they want success or Arsenal for infinity and beyond, so fucking what? What on earth do you expect the cunt to be saying? He has a team of lawyers (issuing writs o any hacks writin not too nice things bout him) and PR people advising him what to say. This is the fucker who couldnt name a Arsenal player until he was schooled. I dont want Kroenke at the club nd I definitely do not want Usmanov.

    FFS you’d think thecurrent board had fucked us like Portsmouth or something the way some people whine and bitch. Yet, these bastard board membrs have guided us into that fucking amazing new stadium and done it without cunts like Usmaov or Kroenke and ye hey saw fit to bring in the yank, so he gets the benefit of the doubt as far as I am concerned

    I am pig sick of this sugar daddy bollocks. Fuck tha, it is boring. And I hope it never happens to the Arsenal. I wuld hate us t be like the chavs.

  151. JD
    “I believe him when he says he would invest, i dont see anyone else doing anything at the moment.”

    Saying and doing something are two different things, i hope you know that, Jabba’s Delights. A lot of work goes on behind the scenes that most fans aren’t privy to, that doesn’t mean the board isn’t doing it’s job.

  152. Do you thin I made myself clear enough there?

    The thing is, all this chat about benefactors, self sustaining models etc will get more fractious until there is some player movement this summer. I an see it getting very messy on here. Not sure I want to be around while all that kicks off, TBH.

  153. Have people considering Usmanov’s part at the club in a positive light done much research on him? This informative piece has been around for a while and i wonder if it’s been read much. Don’t be put off by the title it seems legit.

    “Alisher Usmanov, potential Arsenal chairman, is a Vicious Thug, Criminal, Racketeer, Heroin Trafficker and Accused Rapist”

    http://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2007/09/alisher_usmanov/

  154. Miami Arsenal

    I sure the point is to debate and discuss, the fact that people get emotive about it shows that they are passionate about Arsenal. It doesn’t shine everyday, so when it is cloudy, it gives room to reflect on opportunities both lost and snared by the Arsenal.

    Sorry Dex, ya the information was from Goal but as it turns out it is freely available via newspapers like the time etc. The financial accounts are fair play to all that want to read them, just google 🙂

  155. That was a 1st class rant there Dexter.

  156. Miami Arsenal

    Dfranks, I’m sure he is also a child molester, tax dodger, bigamist and necrophiliac

  157. NJGooner:

    Clearly there is no guarantee of success with more investment but would you really argue that it would not improve our chances and that the money is helping us by sitting in a bank account? All we as fans can ask is that the clubs management does everything in its power to give us the best chance to win.

    The bottom line for me is I just want us to spend whatever is needed to keep us in the top level of world football. If we can stay on top by only spending what we make then fine, but I think thats going to be difficult if not impossible in the long term. In the short term I think there is plenty of reason to believe that we have enough money now to significantly improve our chances for next year just on what we have available. Dogmatically restricting ourselves to only spending what we make limits our ability to compete long term. I do not see anything wrong with our owners contributing some money into the kitty if its needed.

  158. Man, it smells like Jabba the butt in here

  159. Bill, you say this “The bottom line for me is I just want us to spend whatever is needed to keep us in the top level of world football.” Is the progressing to the Knock Out round of the CL top level enough for you? How about doing it for over 10 years straight? Don’t forget to mention have we’ve done this while making a profit rather than racking up hundreds of millions of debt.

  160. M Arse, Could you write an article on that and back it up? The auther of the article is Craig Murray who was formerly British ambassador to Uzbekistan, he might have an opinion worth something to someone is all.

  161. Good Morning

    A compliment on your articles. Well thought out and well written using the finest aspects of the english language without resorting to the use of slang and gutter language. A pleasure I look forward to indulging myself in every morning together with my coffee. A long time Arsenal supporter albeit a frustrated one the past five years with our all to predictable collapse every spring. sigh…. If only Arsene were not so stubborn at the transfer window each year. We could be celebrating memories of great victories delivered by a team with the perfect mix of youth and experience instead of talking about what should have been…

    Thank you

  162. C-bob
    “I haven’t read this site since before my guest blog back in May. I assume that most of those that make this blog different and worth reading have all gone away as well.”

    I’ve mostly stayed away too. I can usually get through about 10-15 comments after reading Yogi’s post before shaking my head and closing the window. It’s been bleak except for the random cameo by the ACLF heroes you speak of.

    victory through harmony. thats not just some cliche saying at this point, we really need to heed our ancient call to arms.

  163. Bill,

    fair point. It just drives me up a wall when people flatly say that money = trophies. I’m also not sure if a few signings are what will push us over the hill in terms of trophies. This past season’s collapse was so apparently mental in nature, compared to a blatant lack of technical or skilled players, that if the players who were in the squad last year cannot collectively get over their short comings, then it won’t matter if Jesus Christ dones the Red and White next year.

  164. NJGooner:

    Hope your still feeling high after your glorious superbowl win.

    Your Yanks just finished kicking the stuffing our of my Rangers. Much as I dislike the Yanks they are certainly a better team right now. I would love us to get back to the World Series but its hard to imagine this year without a significant injection of mojo. I think we can make the playoffs because the AL West is so weak.

    If someone made me bet money I would put the Yanks and Bosox in the ALCS and the Bosox and Phillies in the World Series. Bosox taking no prisoners now and I don’t think your starting pitching depth is enough to beat them in 7 games but never know what will happen.

  165. Miami Arsenal

    Dfunks, this the same Craig Murray that was removed from his post in 2004? The same Mr C Murray that is a political activist and anti Eastern European commentator? If so, then I cannot see why he would have any issue with Usmanov.

    All that is printed is not fact, if it were we would have had about 6 new signings so far this season with the same number headed out.

  166. Marse, Never said it was fact, never even that i agreed with it or not. Just another point of view.

  167. Miami Arsenal

    never mind my sass, opinions are what we are all here for

  168. When is Arsenal starting their pretour? And does it start somwhere close to Jakarta? Just wondering since Cesc is “on a plane to Jakarta” at twitter.

  169. Miami Arsenal

    13th July we kick off against a Malaysia XI

  170. and man does that boy know how to work his fanbase. You got to admire him for that. Buisness man to the core….

  171. Dexter @ 2:26pm,

    Well that just about closes it for me. A f—–g Manc supported!?

  172. Yeah, I thought so too Duppsff! Thanks mate.

    dfranks

    Thanks for reminding me of that article. I read that piece a few years back, if memory serves Arseblogger was banned from linking to it by those same lawyers Mr Murray refers to in his piece. Craig Murray was indeed the ambassador to Uzbekistan and I think his opinions are well worth considering, especially when it concerns the welbeing of our club! I thought I’d paste the last paragraph from that piece, and considering its a few years old now, I think its more valid than ever;

    “Sadly, I expect the football authorities will be as purblind. Football now is about nothing but money, and even Arsenal supporters – as tight-knit and homespun a football community as any – can be heard saying they don’t care where the money comes from as long as they can compete with Chelsea.

    I fear that is very wrong. Letting as diseased a figure as Alisher Usmanov into your club can only do harm in the long term.”

  173. The Chavs have apparently just bought a new manager: Villa-Boas. When Arsene goes I would have loved him at AFC but… oh well.

  174. William:

    Your definition of “success” is your own and I will not try to tell you its wrong.

    I don’t care who our owner is but I don’t want him or her sitting with zillions of dollars in the bank while the club slowly goes from competing for titles and ending up in the top 4 to the next step of hoping we can make the top 4 and then may be worse as we are consistently outspent by our rivals. Nero playing the fiddle while Rome burns. Those who followed the club for many years have told of the days when we went trophy free for many more then 6 years in a row. I hope that does not happen but it certainly is a concern now and especially after AW retires if we remain overly dogmatic.

  175. Miami Arsenal
    Earlier you suggested that in the future Kroenke might saddle the club with the debt from his purchase, so we end up broke like man u. To do this the shareholders would have to pass a special resolution requiring 75% of the vote. In this respect, thanks to Usmanov, he would not be able to do so.

    What worries me now is, if Usmanov passes the 30% shareholding, he has to offer to buy the remaining shares at whatever the highest price he’s paid for shares in the last year, and Kroenke says “thank you very much” whilst pocketing an immediate 50% profit on his investment.

  176. According to the Media, so far we made a bid for every player on the planet yet we didn’t sign a single one out of possible 1,893,259,110,247.5 players.

  177. Orlando_Gooner

    Never embarrassed to wear the glorious red&white in public. Shoot, I love to get lip from Manure or Chav fans if they dare, as they are easily beaten back with a “You can’t even find Manchester on a map” or “Where were you when you were shite?”. If they are one of the few real football fans, we share a laugh and go from there.
    Anytime I encounter a young man wearing an Arsenal shirt, I tell him: “Wise choice, you will have a friend anywhere in the world you go”, as I have found out for myself.
    BTW, nice article, Miami. Up the Arse.

  178. Hopefully we should be able to deal with set pieces from a malaysian xi…. they are small aren’t they?

  179. Bill nice argument evasion there. You said you want us to spend whatever it takes to compete at the top level of world football. Many consider the champions league to be the top level. (If you want to play the “success is whatever you define it, my definition of top level isn’t the same as yours” card, i can keep telling you other reasons why we are in the top level of world football.) We compete there on a year in year out basis. The Champion’s League Quarter Finals has become a standard for some people, and we take that for granted.

  180. Orlando Gooner that sounds about right. I enjoy when someone mentions my Arsenal jersey. The initial “Man U sucks!!” is usually followed by some nice conversation.

  181. @ jon

    Hahaha! Nice one! 😀

  182. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    It’s pointless debating with Bill William he’s just cut from a different cloth. He’s a defense first beautiful game hating grass is greener on the other side glory hunter with a fetish for big name signings. Basically everything Arsensl isn’t. Like LimparAssist, I too believe he’s a Manc or Chav on a windup.

  183. Yeah dgob, he has a brief but successful CV that Villas0Boas dude. Its cost the chavs nearly £14m to get him and as I mentioned earlier, thats the kind of amount they paid Carlo to ditch him. Thats not how I’d want us to be doing things. They have basically spent a decent sized club’s entire transfer budget on getting a manager FFS! Crazy business, but thats what some would have us doing! And if/when the new guy doesnt com up to scratch, then it all starts up again!

  184. william:

    I don’t consider where we have been the last 6 years as the level of success that will maintain us in the top level in world football. We had it between 1998 – 2004 although I hope we can throw in a CL title at some point. My second favorite PL team is Fulham. I consider them to have a successful year if they make the top 8. Its all a matter of expectations. I think we should do better then 3rd or 4th in the PL and top 16 or top 8 of the CL depending on how lucky we are with the draw. I think we still have the reputation and the resources to expect better results. I we lose those expectations its a recipe for dropping down the ladder.

  185. Well PL is a mirror of the British society really. It will be interesting when the government goes in and tries to clean up in the madness. Already there is talking about them being worried. If the footy authorities cannot clean up themselves the state will. And that will be proper embarrasing, for the FA. Cant even control their own backyard….

  186. Yeah it’s pretty hard getting this guy to budge Nasir Jones. I give up. Somehow we went from debating whether or not Arsenal are among the top level of world football to Fulham getting in the top 8. I don’t give a buck about Fulham, aside from Clint Dempsey (hooray patriotism!)

    Dexter you make a good point about Chelskum spending an entire team’s budget on a manager who will most likely get fired in a year or two. This kind of mentality is really f**ked up, and reflects on the instant gratification that some footy fans are seeking.

    i’ve never listened to talksport but this was really hilarious. I think someone posted it yesterday, you should give it a listen if you haven’t heard it. http://www.talksport.co.uk/radio/weekend-sports-breakfast/blog/2011-06-18/caller-modric-better-fabregas-according-football-manager

  187. Agree with Passenal and CBob. Ill-informed, specious nonsense. There MAY be a case to be made for Usmanov or sugar daddies (not that Usmanov has shown the slightest sign of wanting to actually shell out any money as opposed to just talk about investment) but sure as hell is not it.

    And AIC, competing does not mean the same as winning. If it did, then only the team that ended up with a trophy would have had a chance of winning it.

    Why does the idea persist that we do not invest in the team, anyway? We buy the £20-30 million players everyone says they want – we just pay a lot less for them by buying them at the right time. Just like if ManUre had bought Nasri for £8 million, they would have got a top player at rock-bottom price.

  188. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    If you haven’t seen said player on Espnsoccernet for 20 plus million then he’s rubbish and Wenger is a frugal old Frenchman who is content with 4th. It’s all in the name brand, FG. If Chelsea or United aren’t in for said player and they aren’t valued over 20 million then they’re shit and we lack ambition. Period end of story.

  189. Interesting question Consolbob,
    Where ARE the regulars? Surely they are not all ‘indisposed’?

  190. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    You scared em off with all those Le Grove links, Henristic.

  191. Thats not fair Nasir. It wasnt just henristic, a few others share the blame! 😀

  192. I think most of the people realized that all we can talk about over the summer is bound to be rubbish. I share this view, but I also enjoy talking about The Arsenal.

  193. Why does a cunt who thinks Arsene Wenger is running out of ideas allowed to spoil the virginal paradise that is ACLF? Dex, I’m an Arsenal supporter, also from Miami, and I hate these glory hunting, know nothing idiots, who make up our ranks here in the states. I rather the blog shut down for the summer than give these fucking idiots space to fill with their idiotic ramblings.

  194. Jabba, the Miami Heat didn’t invest any more than any other team in the league. There’s a fucking salary cap, duh. Plus Lebron James took a massive wage cut to come here in the first place. Miami, despite all the hate being thrown at this team, is an example of friends wanting to play together instead of money bags trying to build a team.

    Miami, now I’m on the look out for tall, European idiots wearing my beloved club’s shirt. If you’re ever walking around Bayside and you get hit square in the face with an egg, you’ll know it’s me.

  195. Dexter @ 8:09pm,

    No doubt. However, we would not have tried to make him break his contract and the ridiculous buy-out clause would not have come into effect. Such is the Arsenal way…

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