As AST meetings go, last nights was pretty intense. It was held in quite a small room, the information coming out probably felt quite abrasive to some, so at times the debate was quite intense. All in good spirit of course!
I’ll give you the key points jumbled up into no particular order…
Fanshare now has over 2000 members. Quite an achievement in under a year. Problems are arising as there aren’t enough new shares coming onto the market, so whilst popularity of the scheme is high, the shares aren’t there to satisfy demand.
Stan Kroenke has cooled his interest in the scheme as has Usmanov. The Russian said he’ll match whatever Stan puts in… which currently stands at nothing. The club could make shares available themselves. It’s believed £5million a year could be raised for the scheme, that could go into grass-roots football in the community or countless other worthy projects. Does either owner care enough? Doubtful… their alignment at the beginning was political.
Out of interest, the scheme where you can immortalise yourself with a brick outside the Armoury has raised £2million. Quite incredible. The desire to be part of the club we all love is incredible.
Spurs and Liverpool were the biggest under performers last year if you correlate wages to league position. There is normally a .75 correlation between the two. Don’t ask me what that means.
If we want to compete with the best, we have to restructure the way we pay our players. The current way of paying everyone similar wages is costing us our best players and hindering us with the worst. We’ll spend £15mill on dross we don’t want this year. That’s 3 world class super quality players.
Bayern Munich keep superstars on a £120mill wage bill, why can’t we?
Our current commercial revenue compared to Liverpool is about £35mill down. The problem is that most of that money has been paid out and swallowed up by the Emirates.
The feeling is that the board are happy to see out the next few years by being as risk averse as possible. They’ll ride the storm and hope for 4th. Wenger is a developmental manager, 4th is a trophy and a real trophy is probably less important to the manager than churning out the next Cesc or Nasri.
All decisions on transfers and salaries are the managers. Don’t kid yourself there is any merit in the stories about the board interfering. It’s simply not true. If the programme notes last week didn’t tell you that, the fact this news is coming out of a Gazidis meeting should.
Wenger’s business was done in June. He was happy with what he’d purchased. The rest of the buys were a reaction to the United horror show and key injuries to Jack and Vermaelen.
There is £50million in the TPA fund ready to be spent when necessary. The club have no desire to hold onto that cash. They’d plunder it all if it made sense. Problem Arsenal have is an investor who isn’t willing to top up that figure and a manager who doesn’t want to spend it. Where does Gazidis go from there?
Like I said in the week, in a weird way the fans are as much to blame for this situation as the board. The constant insistence this mess has nothing to do with Arsene means the board have their hands tied. When we say board, that means Ivan. There are no decision makers outside him and Wenger apart from Stan, who has about as much to do with the club as me.
Due to what Wenger has done over the years, no one can accept he no longer sees the game in the same way. No one believes he was happy not to sort the squad out this summer. We’re in a situation where the club has slowly been picked apart over the past few years and very few are willing to put the blame at the managers door. His position is bullet proof until he runs the club into the ground.
Fans are making their feelings known at the ticket office. 5000 have handed back their season tickets for Bolton, the game has hit general sale.
No one wants to see this happening but we’ve landed ourselves in an awkward situation where the Emperor is wandering around Trafalgar Square naked and the fans have had Gazidis arrested for indecent exposure instead.
Our obsession with the future has become regressive and the success of yesteryear has blinded us to the steady 6 year decline of the club. Weird eh?
- United are totally compliant with FFP, have 40+ partners to our 12 and they’re self-sustaining. That’s where we want to be. They got their through success on the pitch as well as savvy business skills.
- Arsenal could be worth £1.3billion sterling.
- Only Wenger and Gazidis work on transfer deals.
- Nik B would have been worth £25million in total if we’d sold him for £10mill.
- If we renew Vermaelen, Song, Theo and Robin, we’ll make a loss the year after as things stand currently.
- Samir was sold for such a high fee because City tapped him up.
- Arsenal were bang on for suing that Spanish hat seller. She was trying to take out a trademark for the Arsenal logo that encompassed the whole of Spain.
- Arsenal track 60 players at a time.
- Hazard and M’Vila didn’t move because their clubs refused to sell to anyone.
- Property at Queensland Road will be next years Champions League safety net.
- ‘Spend some fu**ing money’ chants are directed at Arsenal because the money IS there.
- Diaby earns £12k a week more than Modric.
- Best source of Arsenal shares is dead people. 16 going to the AST last year.
- Arsene Wenger is solely responsible for wages and the players we buy.
- Usmanov has two boxes side by side and he’s joined them up into a super box. Out of his own money.
- The stadium debt has remained relatively stable.