AST predicts profit but raise concerns

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The Arsenal Supporters’ Trust (AST) have called on Stan Kroenke and his fellow Arsenal board members to clarify their vision for the future running of the club and to outline whether or not funds are available for Arsene Wenger to strengthen his squad in the transfer market.

The request is made in advance of the release of the club’s latest financial results, which are expected to reveal another profit-generating period, but with concerns mounting over the long-term effects of possible failure to qualify for the Champions League.

Having sold the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Samir Nasri, Gael Clichy and Emmanuel Eboue during the summer, the Gunners look likely to see their profits for the six months to November 30, 2011 rise to a pre-tax figure of £45 million.

However, the concern raised by the AST is whether that profit represents money to spend on new players or merely an accounting profit which exists as a future safety net should the club miss out on the riches of playing in Europe’s premiere knockout competition.

Scrutinising the effects of the doomsday scenario – failing to qualify for the Champions League – the AST predicts that in addition to a loss of at least £27 million of UEFA television money, player retention will prove more problematic, the sale of premium corporate seats will drop, attendances will lower, while the value of future sponsorship deals will likely suffer.

It is also believed that falling outside the top four will see Arsenal lose out on other revenue closer to home. The further down the league the club falls, the less Sky will be inclined to show us on television and the less money we get from the Premier League in prize-money. As a consequence, cash we’ve grown accustomed to pocketing will be ceded to rivals.

None of the above is particularly ground-breaking. It doesn’t take a degree in economics to grasp the basics of supply and demand, but that doesn’t make it any less important for the board to at least consider the questions which the AST are proposing.

Have resources been held back in January as a contingency for failure to qualify for the Champions League?

Why is Arsenal’s £130 million annual wage bill not delivering results on the pitch? Are too many average players earning more than they are worth and is this making it hard to offload them? Are there plans to address the wage structure in general, rewarding those who deserve it?

If Arsenal fail to qualify for the Champions League, might the club fall foul of Financial Fair Play (FFP) issues in 2013 and 2014?

Would a rights issue, the likes of which was offered by Alisher Usmanov in the summer of 2009, be similarly dismissed if offered again this year?

Meanwhile, Stan Kroenke will be in town this week, ahead of the financial results and for the monthly board meeting, each one of which he has attended since taking control.

If there is a public backing of the manager it should be taken at face value, rather then being the ‘dreaded’ vote of confidence suffered by many other managers in the past – and hopefully the owner can provide some direction and leadership at a time when the club really needs it.

The full AST statement can be found here

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Goon

So basically missIng out on 4th place means we’re screwed right and proper.

Monkey foot. And head.

Right up the poo pipe, son!

Dave Gooner

Someone should point out to the board that FIFA’s Financial Fair Play only matters if you are qualifying for European competition.

Matters not a shite otherwise.

Dannyboy

Thankyou for pointing this out arseblg and AST. But I fear this season won’t bring champions league football next season as the wheels have now come firmly off. This was asked of the board last season and we were all let down. What top quality players want to play in the Europa league? Not many if you look at Liverpool as an example!

Charlie

Yeah, that Suarez bloke really sucks…

Cygan's Left Foot

What top quality player will sign for us???????/ With this man doesn’t want to give up his 7 mil a year and leave, it doesn’t matter if we play CL, Europa league or even Championship!!!. We never sign a “top, top quality” players for 7 years. All of our last 7 years signing never deminded a CL to play for us unless we signed someone I don’t know!!!!!!!!!! Squilliaci, Chamakh, Park, Per, Santos, Kos, Verm, Gerv, Arteta, Silvester,, Le cunt, Santos etc we were fighting for their signing with only mid to bottom ten teams not with ANY top club.… Read more »

Bigdreep

Logically, we’ve surely benefitted frm the Champions league for 15 straight years.

Ebouefan

KSE’s strategy

1.Don’t lay out any direction
2.Don’t invest anything in the team
3.????
4.Profit

Thorough

@Ebouefan. You are so wrong. KSE strategy: 1. Profit. 2.Profit. 3. Profit. Et cetera.

Jasonissimo

where ???? = Arsene Wenger

MAllen

I think we need to review the wage structure. Get rid of some of our mediocre players – the ones who are happy to play at 66% effort, collect their wage, and go home feeling satisfied. Get rid I say.
Let’s pay megabucks to the few really talented players we have and pay peanuts to the guys who don’t step up on a regular basis.
Then we will be able to afford the Mata’s etc while keeping the overall wsge bill manageable

Murt

So increase the gap between the highest and lowest players. I have to say I completely agree. There should be a wage structure in place so that crazy sums aren’t handed out but at the same time wages should be based on performances and contributions to the team and not based on a left-wing code in which everyone is earning relatively similar amounts. The likes of Denilson, Bendtner, Diaby and Walcott are the result of the current structure where potential has been rewarded instead of results. It’s the equivalent of a corporation ‘giving’ you a well-paid position in their business… Read more »

JonnyTechno

Definitely, even a basic+bonus’ system for all rewarding everything from pass completion to assists, tackles won & goals.

“Quit pro quo clarice” sneers arsene 😉

It’s the only way I could justify overpaying anyone and it’s good business sense.

They have and use the stats already, simply correlate them to pay!

Northern Gooner

It would be churlish to try and second guess silent stan. Maybe he can rattle some cages whilst over here, be of use as he’s the majority shareholder. Still rather him than usmanov, stan’s clearly the lesser of two evils

Fatgooner

How come nobody wants to give Usmanov a chance? We’ve done sweet fuck all so far under Korenke, and he even seems to be prepared to back a manager who has won nothing for seven years.

The Yank knows nothing about football, has a reputation for owing average, unsuccessful sports teams, and never speaks.

Usmanov is an Arsenal fan who attends almost every game and is worth over TEN BILLION quid. This one’s a no-brainer for me.

Merlin's Panini

hang on… fat… gooner…Usmanov? You cheeky so and so!

Fatgooner

Niet!

What's my name?

Didn’t he back Arsene’s last minute shopping spree last summer that brought in about 5 players? He didn’t choose the players, that was the manager’s choice, so you can blame him for the quality he signed that’s not delivered eg Park, Benayoun.

Just don’t say we’ve done fook-all under Stan, coz that’s far from truth.

Zack

The Denver Nuggets have made the playoffs every single season since 2003-04 working with the constraints of not only the salary cap but the fact that no free agent superstar will join them. That’s not Kroenke’s fault by the way, as the top basketball players make more endorsement money when they go to big markets, which is important because the NBA has a set maximum contract policy. Moreover, they have been one of the more shrewd teams in terms of player management, getting assets in trading a washed up Allen Iverson and of course acquiring nearly all of the Knicks… Read more »

Zack

Off topic, but why am I the only one with a Napoleon picture?

Conner

@Zack- I agree with you about American owners being largely silent and ‘behind the scenes’, I personally like them to not be very public. I would hate having, say, Mark Cuban as an owner. I like the passion for his team, but he bugs the shit out of me. But saying that the Nuggets making the playoffs is a big thing is a little misleading, because half of the NBA teams make the playoffs. I know they gave…the Lakers (I think) a run for their money a few years back when they had the dude with the horrible neck tattoo… Read more »

Arsenalkid700

Connor- Europeans should stay out of American Football. The fact that International American Football has not been good is not that surprising when a Swede is running the International American Football Federation.

ickenhamgooner

I think our wage structure is a broader issue the supposes mediocre players.

I also understand that our younger talent also receive reasonable salaries (c.15/20k pw for young reserve players who maybe just play carling cup) which is very much out of kilter with other clubs and perhaps rewards potential before delivery.

arseblog

Agree completely with the wages thing, but in general we have to manage our resources better.

Which takes into account the wage bill but also how we spend our money.

Let’s say Park is on £20k a week + transfer fee of £2m, over 12 months that’s a £3m outlay for a player who doesn’t play. We can’t use our money like that, especially if we’re trying to be clever about it.

ickenhamgooner

Agree Blogs. This is one thing that has been trumpetted by Ivan at a number of AST meetings – our supposedly excellent financial modelling process when buying players that is the envy of all other clubs.

I remain unconvinced when we have players we have a system of player receiving salaries which do not match their contribution to the team.

Everyone accepts there will always be the occasional player who does not live up to expectations or deteriorates unexpectedly but we just seem to have too many.

Maybe we should look at the model?

DownUnderGunner

The transfer fees of players come under player amortisation cost (cost of writing down transfer fee over life of contract). So, in the financial books, a player signed for 10 million to a 5 year contract, represents an amortisation cost of 2 million annually. Arsenal’s last set of account that published a 22 million amortisation cost are waaaay lower than United and Spuds (39m) and Pool (40m). This shows more or less that we haven’t been buying any big names for big fees, but shows in that sense that we have room to move to afford it. You have to… Read more »

Comedian

Agree some of the players dont deserve the wages they are getting for the shift or no shift they put in. But with the young players especially coming in from outside England isnt a higher wages a way to lure them? Yes we have fantastic academy which will help them for the future no doubt but if you do come barca , dortmund i guess the wages we offer them do pay a part to get that talent associated with our club(fact is who doesnt wanna start earning at an ealy age.)

chris

I agree with what your saying but i’ve heard things like Craig Eastmond is on about 15k a week and Jay Emanuel Thomas was on about the same the problem being is giving young players that kind of money means we struggle to move them on as other clubs won’t pay that much for them.

Maddy

Is it true that our board memeber other than the chairman sit on beanbags?
Surely i cant see any protest against the board.

Comedian

Why the fuck does my name changes. Stupid fone

Fatgooner

Just remember: no matter how incompetent Wenger is, he mustn’t be criticised. He may have spunked 130 million in wages on a squad of which half are either unfit or not good enough to play for the first team, but Wenger is God, so he absolutely can’t be slagged off.

In fact, he should be given more money so that he can waste it on more useless crap like Park, Almunia, Bendtner, Arshavin, Squilaci and Walcott.

Wenger is God! Wenger is God! Wenger is God! Wenger is God! Wenger is God! Wenger is God! Wenger is God! Wenger is God!

Attasmani

You can accuse Wenger of not spending enough money and i agree that it seems weird and uneconomical not to spend a bit more and in return have a much higher chance of being successful. But I don’t really know if the reason for that is his stubbornness, the boards stubbornness, or if we simple have no money, and neither do you I guess, so it’s unfair to blame only Wenger. And I agree that there is something wrong with our wage structure, but to accuse him of wasting money on transfers is absolutely rubbish. Does anyone remember how much… Read more »

paddymac

Stupid, immature comment. If you’re going to attempt sarcasm, try and do it with a modicum of intelligence.

Wenger is certainly not immune to criticism, but don’t you think there are other problems with the club? Hence why the AST are posing these questions to the board.

By the way, no one should ever be “slagged off” as you put it. What good does that do anyone? If you’re going to criticise, make sure you have a well reasoned argument with a point to it, else no-one’s going to listen. Grow up.

Fatgooner

A few days ago, Paddy, I asked a simple question: how much is Djourou getting for his new contract?

Listening to the radio today (Five live Monday Night Club) I find out from an AST member that it is fifty grand a week! Yes, fifty grand for our fourth-choice centre-half. A man so awful that he had to be dragged off at half time against Man U at home.

I rest my case. Wenger must go.

superanderslimpar

That cannot be right about Djourou? Can it?

Cygan's Left Foot

What is more sad, Welbeck at Manure asking for 60K and they ONLY overing him take it ro leave 42K!!!!!!!!!!!!.

paddymac

That is shocking about Djourou, bloody hell. I’m with you on the wage structure and think the club needs a massive shake up but I don’t think just removing Wenger is the answer. The problems seem to be starting from higher up and trickling down, and we need some answers from the board as to why they’ve allowed the club to get in this mess.

I just cant see any benefit in constantly calling for the manager’s head. I understand I but feel like its oversimplifying a deeper rooted problem.

Sigh.

Voldermort

It’s about profit has been for years and that’s been obvious. If as suggested we have 45mil profit put that on top of potential players sales. ie rvp 30 mil plus the dead weight may bring in another 15+ it’s not inconceivable that we have 90 million to spend in the summer and still not put ourselves in debt. Does anyone really believe we would spend anywhere near these sums. Arsene has already said that this years results are down to injuries to jack, diaby and santos etc so presumably when these players come back with the odd addition he… Read more »

Monkey foot. And head.

I like Stan’s syrup.

Never fails to gimme an early morning ‘bubble’ on the train.

Yankee Doodle Cheeseburger Munching C**t

Syrup?

Mr. Eboue Armann Yes

This guy hits the nail on the head
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8aFkKsTlH0

paddymac

I welcome the questions that the AST are proposing, good on them. We’re all desperate to know the answers because the situation at Arsenal is baffling. Other questions I would like to know the answer to: How can we justify being the fifth richest club in the world, yet we’re barely fifth in the Premier League at the moment? Shouldn’t a club of this stature be aiming to compete at a higher level? And similarly related to the club’s wealth and league position, how can we justify our season ticket prices? If we are not achieving success, would the board… Read more »

Rob'67

“If there is a public backing of the manager it should be taken at face value, rather then being the ‘dreaded’ vote of confidence suffered by many other managers in the past – and hopefully the owner can provide some direction and leadership at a time when the club really needs it.” Is the author of that paragraph satirical or retarded ? The only direction Kronke is interested in is one that point him towards more – short term – money. The only direction Wenger is moved towards is Hubris and he’s too stupid to know what automatically follows. Throw… Read more »

Gooner4ever

wenger out…thats all in my mind about Arsenal now.

Gooner4ever

wenger out.!!!!!!

Attasmani

Can you say that you know it with a certainty of 100 % that Arsene Wenger is the cause why we are not spending?

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Can you even say with a certainty of 100% that spending 90 million more will make us a winning team?

The “Wenger Outists” and the “Spend some fucking moneyists” keep up their never ending chants, but none of them ever tell us exactly how much we must spend to guarantee becoming a winning team (because we are already NOT a winning team, so the spending they demand MUST bring trophies, as the only way to win is to come FIRST in something).

So… HOW MUCH?

ontheup

Can the “Wenger OUT” crowd change their tune to “Somebody IN” please. I’m just curious to see who’s being suggested. Just for laughs.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Can you say with any certainty that if we get Wenger Out then our best players will not agitate to leave because Arsenal have sacked the man they came here to work with?

There will always be unforeseen results from any action taken without deep thought and careful planning in consideration of all of the potential consequences.

A knee jerk reaction will generally impact in the area of one’s own groin.

Aamir

The summer of 2008 was when we fucked everything up. 05/06 was the last season at Highbury and 06-07 was first season at Emirates and it was clear that we were building a new team. 07-08 our young guns surprised everybody and we would have won the title had Martin Taylor not broken Eduardo’s leg. That is three trophyless seasons but it was acceptable b/c it was clear that a good new team had been formed. In summer of 2008 we should have strengthened that good young team with two experienced good players. Instead we let Flamini and Gilberto go… Read more »

Bendtners_ego

Pat Rice Out!!!
Vic Akers Out!!

Sorry, couldn’t resist going against the grain. 😉

Thejollygunner

Well, at least no one can say Arsenal are a selling club. We even go to great lengths to pay young and/or average players well over the odds based on potential effectively making them unattractive to all bar the very top sides when it comes to moving them on. And let´s face it, if you´ve flopped atArsenal, you´re unlikely to make it anywhere else at the same level or better. A wage structure like ours becomes a handicap when all it serves to do is limit how much you can pay the best players. When the efforts of RVP are… Read more »

Bendtners_ego

In all seriousness though, I do have a couple of comments regarding the profit / no-profit forecast. 1) Arsenal does not declare a dividend to te shareholders, so any profits not reinvested in the club operations would theoretically increase the share price.  The cash reserves would be offset by the equity on the balance sheet.  You would only realize a gain if you sell.  Stan isn’t selling.  The Fat Russian (TFR) is stubborn and isn’t selling.  AST isn’t selling.  So, we have a Mexican standoff and an increase in the cash accounts. 2) If we do not qualify for CL,… Read more »

Danish Gooner

Listen it is not rocket science,no cl no new players……………period
Wenger have spent only in late Augus(for several seasons)t because he knew that Arsenal had qualified for the cl proper.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Listen it is not rocket science. No CL equals different players to the ones we might have targeted with CL…..period.

Going out of business through overspending and mismanagement of funds a la Portsmouth equals no players. (and apparently you can even come back from that multiple times)

GeeFive

Kroenke has stepped in approved the complete overhaul of management, from GM, coach, basically right down the entire line of the St. Louis Rams. Before next season starts, it looks like the players will be made up of an entirely different team. He’s been vocal, he’s voiced his opinion, and he has participated. (At least alot more than he has with Arsenal) Everything that we need him to do here. Now, I’m not saying gut the team and rebuild from scratch, I’m just saying he needs to stand up, voice his opinions and stance on the whole of Arsenal and… Read more »

The Gun

“the lack of direction and commitment, the non-existence of leadership” … more or less on and off the pitch right now! (RVP excluded)

QuietGooner

Doom Doom Doom.
Even if we do finish outside the Top 4, then there is still a chance next year. Just look at (look away) Spurs. Not in the Champs League this year, but are fighting for the title this year…… It can be done…. with the same manager.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

What ? Harry ? No thanks!!!!!

(Yes, I know what you meant really)

(But if you didn’t mean it really then I repeat statement number one with even more exclamation marks)

Pete

For all the good Wenger did, he has done equal harm. He has now completely and utterly fucked Arsenal for the next decade with his insane wage policy which is going to be extremely difficult to turn round. Getting rid of this bastard and his stupid, selfish policies is going to be extremely difficult.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Unnecessarily rude insult given at the end of a rant that is based only on speculation about who controls and plans the wage policy. As such not worth the screen space it takes up. Scrolling your rudeness off of my screen in

3

2

1

Gone

The Gun

If only I had some of that Microsoft money. I would run straight to Ivan and the rest willing to donate everything. But the problem is that I would probobly get a “No thanks!” and some jibber jabber about our cool self-sustaining business model.

Eastupper

Read all the comments with interest and some valid points raised on both sides of the argument. However, the board’s policy on releasing funds to Wenger has nothing to do with his inept tactical awareness and on the evidence of the last two games an inability to motivate the dressing room.

h0odi

It may be for the better we finish outside the top four. Maybe then ACTUAL changes will take place. 1 step back, 2 steps forward kind of thing. It seems mediocrity is not considered failure, so we either need to win something very soon, or completely fail so changes take place. Anything but consistent mediocrity.

gooner

Self sustainable business model – self destructing football model. On the business side yes we’ve benefited for that long. On the football side yes for the most part of that time but looks like we just appear in the champions league not to win it but make some cash and put a few of our best players in the window

DownUnderGunner

Self sustaining need not be bad for performance. Bayern Munich have made a profit 19, yes NINETEEN years in a row. In that time they have won 10 domestic titles, 7 German cups, 6 League cups (small comp), a UEFA cup, an Intercontinetal cup, a Champions League and twice runner up of the champions league.

Say what you will about the Bundesliga, but those European results are only matched by Barca, Real, Juventus, AC Milan and United over the same period.

korchha

Seriously, what is the point in asking these questions? It is evident that the board, the owner and the CEO of the club have no interest in footballing issues and want to run the club as a business. There will be changes only when the club has financial problems i.e. they show a loss. Till then, it will be status quo. Nobody cares about champions league, wage bill, etc. till we are making a profit. Wenger will never be sacked because he can deliver profits with minimal resources. Its basic big-management thinking – If it aint broke, dont fix it.… Read more »

d-holio

Spuds aren’t doing that badly for a team that finished outside the Champions League spots. They managed to hold on to all their key players despite Thursday night football on Channel 5.
I hope like hell we qualify for CL, but not end of the world stuff if we don’t. The team with the cocks on their shirts prove as much.
COYG!

Voldermort

If its true about djourou being on 50k a week and thinking about it, having signed a new contract and when you here what others earn it sounds true. Then as a club we are fucked. The 3 rd highest wages in the league is laughable when you look at the quality and the effort we put in. We have arguably one truly world class player in rvp, and we don’t pay him city type wages anyway. We have quality in verm kos sagna jack and one or two others that have proved it over a few years. But the… Read more »

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

I don’t feel distanced from the club. I’m just a fan. They have never made any decision based on my thoughts or wishes, and I don’t expect them to start doing so. I’ll still support them anyway because they’re Arsenal. It’s kind of like real life. You know, that thing where you have children who don’t listen to you or act on your suggestions, commit all the same cock-ups that you did, and don’t always do things right, but you still love them anyway. See, that is what support is all about. It’s actually a nice thing. All warm-and-fuzzy feelling… Read more »

[…] other news the AST met last night to provide some analysis of Arsenal’s upcoming financial results. The profit is expected to be in the region of £40m but seems to come mostly from player trading, […]

Jeff

I’ve never posted on here before, but must say I love the daily Arseblog. Thanks Mr Bloggs, it’s certainly given me many a chuckle. I actually think you’re the most creative swearer I’ve ever heard, well done that man. I’ve been a season ticket holder for over 30 years and, as most on here, love the Arsenal. Still reading the comments on here, I am genuinely surprised how many still support Mr Wenger. Don’t get me wrong he’s been a great manager in the past, but how many more chances should he get? It’s his team, his squad, his tactics.… Read more »

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Actually, if you’ve been supporting that long then you should actually be able to remember that we used to bobble around between 5th and 7th most years, and the times we won something were occasional but always very special.

Voldermort

Well said Fred. Great fist post and totally hit many nails on the head.

AGunner

Does anyone know if Arsene actually discusses and sets the wage of his players? Or do the Arsenal finance people sort it out? Cus I have a hard time imagining Arsene going through the nitty gritty of contracts and clauses in order to sort out his squad and transfers. Would’ve thought he would just tell them the players he wants, players he wants to keep, and players he wouldn’t mind/wants to let go. As for Johan, think his new contract is untimely. He was great last season, really stood up, but its scary to say now but he was one… Read more »