Thursday, April 25, 2024

Arsenal have £70-80m to spend (or not spend) in January

If you haven’t already seen the brilliant analysis of Arsenal’s financials from Swiss Ramble, you can check it out here.

It’s well worth your time and provides genuine context to the money in the bank. For example, the idea that Arsenal have £200m to spend on transfers is a fallacy, the cash balance is used for the day to day running of the club, but there are significant funds still available.

SWISS RAMBLE: Arsenal’s cash balance has steadily risen: May 2007 £74 million, May 2008 £93 million, May 2009 £100 million, May 2010 £128 million, May 2011 £160 million, May 2012 £154 million, May 2013 £153 million, May 2014 £208 million and May 2015 £228 million.

In other words, there is substantial money available to spend. It’s clearly not as much as the £228 million in the books, but we can say with some conviction that there would be enough available in the January transfer window to safely cover some of the glaring weaknesses in the squad: let’s say £70-80 million (with the usual caveats).

The changing financial landscape of the Premier League is also highlighted:

SR: Traditionally Arsenal have been one of the few football clubs able to make a profit, but the impact of the last TV deal has helped change this with only five Premier League clubs reporting a loss in the 2013/14 season. In fact, Arsenal’s £4.7 million profit was only the 12th highest that season, far behind clubs like Tottenham Hotspur £80 million, Manchester United £41 million, Southampton £29 million and Everton £28 million.

As is evidence of increased spending from the club on players:

SR: Looking at Arsenal’s cash flow statement, we can see signs of a change in approach: in the six seasons between 2007 and 2012 Arsenal spent just a net £4 million on player purchases, while they have spent a net £83 million in the last three seasons.

However, while healthy finances are obviously good news, they also lead to frustration about lack of investment in the squad this summer. The club is better placed than ever to be competitive in the market, and to be able to take some risks. Perhaps not to the extent that other clubs do, but certainly more than we saw this summer.

There’s also talk of another £3m payment to KSE LLC for the vague ‘strategic and advisory services’ they render to the club, a payment that drew much criticism when it was announced last year. For a club that has long prided itself on not paying dividends to board and owners, this feels very much like that.

Anyway, do read the Swiss Ramble post. It’s educational.

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Groundhog day as far as I’m concerned

Groundhog day for finances, groundhog day for football

I hope we get out of this current run of shit form, we only play good for half-seasons.


*play well


“In fact, Arsenal’s £4.7 million profit was only the 12th highest that season, far behind clubs like Tottenham Hotspur £80 million”

The profit margin of a selling club…..


They just bought Son for 30 million and N’jie & Alderweireld for a combined 30 million.
So if they’re making 80 million in profit, why aren’t we? Something doesn’t feel right about that.


So now we have to have a profit of 80m as well as spend 80 million on Benzema?

Something doesn’t feel right about that…

Financially or otherwise


That’s not last season


… … … really? I mean, really? Damn it, do I really have to point out the obvious?
That season Spurs got a £85million bail out… hint hint.
And Son was £22m.

Rambling Pete

Seeing these figures does make you wish we’d gone out and taken a chance in the market this summer. Obviously don’t spend for the sake of spending but it’s hard to imagine there wasn’t somebody out there who could have come in and added something to the squad. It reminds me of when I was part of a folk-rock combo when I was a younger man. We had some great sounds and our main songwriter, Gordy P, was a genius when he wasn’t trying to slice his own arms open with kitchen knives (nobody knew what self-harm was back then).… Read more »




Didn’t even read. Thumbed up anyway. Glad to have u back!


That was genuinely the best comment I have ever read on here.

Djangoon Unchained



Welcome back Pete, please stay longer this time!


Have you been injured Pete?
Glad to see you approaching match fitness…x


This was and is my massive frustration with our transfer activity!

Every time the Coq is involved in a brushing tackle (which is part of his game as well as the role), it’s a ‘heart in the mouth’ situation because we don’t have a natural back-up. It could do easily been addressed in this transfer window.

Instead the money is being used to line the pockets of Silent Stan!


I’m with you on the vulnerability of our Coq.

I think most of us can understand not buying a striker given the unavailability of ‘top, top, top” options, but it seems unforgivable not to strengthen in defensive mid. There were loads of options available.

For me it’s the equivalent of waiting until Jan to buy a centre back last season – that decision could have made the difference between a title challenge or not.


Just buy Carvalho and be done with it


Isn’t Carvalho totally bolloxed?

Andy Mack

Yep, broken tibia

Alright Mate

I think it’s clear that Wenger has faith in Arteta, even though the fans don’t.

I see the value of having Arteta around but am also fearful he is past it. The likes of Seedorf and Giggs have shown the value of sticking with older players, and maybe Arteta just needs a couple of games to get match fit. But it sure is a risk.

Andy Mack

We don’t have any bad players in the squad, only rusty ones or ones that need experience!

alan armstrong

Must agree with these comments I think all arsenal fans are frustrated with wenger we have said it before but this time could be costly for the club he says the right players are not available but you have to really go for for a player if you want him and wenger seems to lack the determination to do that hence after two or three years we still lack a powerful midfielderand a prolific striker


Should probably spend 60m on marco reus. Maybe inprove at the back also. Shouldnt have sold the Verminator


Wenger has failed to show that he has the stomach to go for it this year. To rub shoulders with the top teams I’m afraid big big investment was necessary. Value for money? Not a tooic

John C

I don’t think anyone, myself included has ever suggested we spend £200m, however the fact that Arsenal’s cash reserves represent 40% of all Premier League cash reserves shows that to operate even a profitable football club doesn’t require hoarding so much cash. Aresnal’s conservative financial approach is more of a hindrance than a help. As i’ve stated before and Arseblog did today, Henry cost £11m when the clubs turnover was £48m so represented 24% of all income on one player, Martial cost £36m this summer for a club who’s income was over £400m, that’s less than 10%. Arsene is no… Read more »


Why take gambles in the market? That’s what Sp*rs do every season and while they might get 1-2 decent players out of it they are always left with 4-5 shite ones they struggle to get rid of… Have a look around at some of the transfer market gambles of recent times, Falcao, Torres, Balotelli.. All wrote anything from £30-80m off their clubs books.

It’s staggering that people are calling for us to take risks and gamble with the clubs money, do you take risks and gamble 30-40% of your own yearly income? No, do you fuck, it’s stupid.

John C

Henry was a gamble, Pires was a gamble, every transfer is a gamble. Professionals get paid for their judgement and he’s not making a judgement at all. Giving a list of transfer failures proves nothing, why don’t i give you a list of transfer successes, what about Suarez or Rakitic at Barcelona were they not a gamble? Citing the name’s of failures is a cope out and cowardly. And yes, on a daily basis i gamble my money making calculated risks and so do you. Ever bought a TV or washing machine, no guarantee they’ll perform as you would like… Read more »


No mate, There is a big difference between a gamble and a calculated risk.

John C

No there isn’t, they’re one and the same. A gamble is a risk with the hope of success, aka a calculated risk.


Henry was not a ‘gamble’ though was he, Arsene had worked with him before and knew he had ability, even Juve, where he was struggling asked for a large amount of money for him, suggesting that they weren’t unaware that he had potential to be a top player. The same way as you wouldn’t describe buying Messi for £10m as a ‘gamble’, it’s calculated that there is a high probability of success, a gamble is where you take a punt on someone like Laccazette for example, being a success in the PL for £30m and you aren’t convinced one way… Read more »

John C

First of all Henry was a massive gamble, he didn’t score for his first 8 games if you remember and looked like a bit of a donkey. Secondly, if Wenger needs to work with players before he buys them we’re screwed because he hasn’t worked with any players other than Arsenal one’s for the last 19 years. That particular trick was played years ago. I don’t know who he should buy, i’m not being paid millions of pounds a year to make those judgements but that’s the point, Wenger is. He is the professional who is paid to back his… Read more »


The most reasoned and sensible argument I’ve read on hear in a long time. Every tranfer is a gamble. Torres from Liverpool to Chelsea looked like a banker but didn’t work out. Same league scoring for fun but for whatever reason it didn’t work. We have spent millions of late to stand still in the league. Some would say we have regressed. If we profess to be a big club and want to compete with the rest as the club continue to suggest then we have to act big and go the extra mile and get th players that the… Read more »


Scoring 0 goals in 8 games doesn’t mean anything when you consider that over the course of his first season he scored more than 1 in 2 though does it? Some donkey… Also, explain where I stipulate that Wenger needs to work with players before he buys them? What he must first do to guarantee any given signing is not a ‘gamble’ is be convinced of the players quality, be that through working with them, scouting or whatever.. As you rightly point out he is the professional paid lots of money to make those judgements, that he hasn’t found one… Read more »


I don’t think John C is suggesting we chuck a bunch of players’ names in a hat and pick one out, simply that spending a large amount of money on any footballer is always a risk, given that there’s no way to accurately gauge how they’ll deal with the move. The ‘risky’ transfers, for me, are the ones for between £20-30m. I know that’s a colossal amount of money, but it’s the world we find ourselves in, and in my mind that’s where we fail in our business. We’re generally good at the £15m-ish level, and Sanchez and (to a… Read more »


Agreed. We invested in the new stadium and accepted low player investment for a few years so that we would come out of the far end as a top English team. We are now out of the far end, have the cash reserves and yet seem stuck in the “fiscally conservative” model we lived with while paying off the debt. Look what’s happened to Citeh after the two huge gambles they took on Sterling and DeBryne. They are re-energized and have talent to cover when one of their superstar midefielders (DaSilva) gets hurt. I’m not saying they’ll win the league… Read more »


The answer comes in the tension between the clubs two goals, football club vs business.

Arsenal is a good football club and but an excellent business. Maybe it could also be an excellent football club and just a good business.


Krychowiak would have not been expensive and added so much to the team. Sevilla bought N’zonzi for only 7m, so they had a replacement signed already.

Bizarre and frustrating.


Don’t get the angst about the £3m. In fact I think he’s been quite restrained. He spent money to buy the share didn’t he? And you can’t honestly claim that the amount taken out hampers investment in the club.

John C

Agreed, i think had we properly invested in the team those who have a problem with it would be less vocal.

Monkey Nuts

He paid money for shares in a football club yes. When he comes to sell those shares he will make a massive profit. The money that we make and spend comes out of the money that we earn as a football club, not from his pocket. I understand why he has invested his money and why he won’t put any of his personal money into the club. The angst that people have about payments to his companies for “services” is presumably based on the lack of openness and clarity about what these payments are actually for. If they are services… Read more »


Could be worse. The Glazers just took 16 million pounds out of Man Ure for no reason other than to line their own pockets. It wasn’t for services provided, it was a straight dividend payment.


Same thing. The 3m is dividends let’s be honest. Plus at least the Glazers are putting investment into the team.


Oh, god. I don’t even want to read the comments on this thread haha.


Those will be reflected in the next financial year and not this current one. Our profits are lower than the Spuds because they include transfers for Sanchez,Debuchy,Ospina, Chambers and Gabriel.


I would like to clarify that I don’t agree with wasting a load of money for the sake of it. However, there were deals we could have made to improve our squad, give our goals momentum and critically, show our players that we are going for it as a club. We could have paid for Schneiderlin and Martial, we didn’t want to and I’m not saying those are comparable deals. The top two clubs in the league table today made a lot of activity – De Bruyne, Schweinsteiger, Martial, Delph, Otemendi, Iheanacho, Depay, Romero, Darmian! They are the top two… Read more »


We should offer £30 million for Kim Kallstrom


Wenger’s typical moves in the market are for younger players to players just entering their prime that can stay at Arsenal for a number of years and then still have sell on value (like Sanchez, Ozil, Gabriel, etc.). He did change that somewhat the Summer he bought Podolski, Carzola and Giroud as they were a bit older ( so wouldn’t have as much sell on value), but still had many years left. The players available this Summer that he didn’t go for (or that he did, but we don’t know about it) like Martial, Schnederlin, Carvalho, etc. all fit the… Read more »


United spent 36 million on martial and he looks to be a decent signing so far. We got Jeff for nothing. If he turns out to be as good as we hope does that not represent an outstanding piece of work? It’s not all about the dollar. Does having that cash in the bank make us a more formidable club?

Jack's little finger

You can flip your argument to fit whatever side of the coin you choose to be on as far as the money topic goes but the question is; were there players out there who could have improved the squad in the summer? Answer is a clear yes. As for what happens next is up for debate, but sadly it seems we will rue not adding to the squad both from a numbers point of view as well as psychologically. A great example for me is when Sterling scored his first City goal. You could see the whole group of players… Read more »


2/3 injuries to key players before start of the season(or before the transfer window is shut) –>Doesn’t address the needs of the team starting of the season when everyone can see what the team needs —> The team performs poorly until December —> Make some buys to save the remainder of the season –> Team comes out strong and we feel like everything in this world is good.

Rhinse and Repeat every fuckin season.


Yeah it’s all a bit boring really. Except… we have won 2 fa cups in 2 years. And the progress was obvious before the catastrophic start to the season. I’m gutted.


As far as spending money in January goes same as any january transfer period its a no go period with players cup tied or clubs not interested in selling get your Kallstrom shirts at the ready and wish for a buy or 2 in the summer! going to need more than 2 with Arteta & Flaminni end of contracts unless he gives them another year YAWN…. always always just 2 or 3 short of being formidable and constant with or without the injuries

Merlin's Panini

I really think we should just blow the money on Higuain in January if Theo and Giroud aren’t doing the business by then. I still think they have it in them, and the rest of the team, to start finding the net. However, it would be useful to have one extra reliable option. I know Higuain isn’t the absolute best but he’s definitely as good as Giroud and a bit of similar competition might get the best out of both of them. It would intensify the competition to be the best striker of that ilk at the club. It would… Read more »


There’s no guarantee. You spend the money on an aging Higuain and if he does not perform, you not only have a very expensive dud on your books you will have to get rid of for substantial loss (meanwhile you will be saddled with huge salary until you can get rid of him) Falcao seem “world Class’ when brought over and he did not do the business. Balotelli the media trumpeted as a ‘no brainer’ and he didn’t either. The likes of Jovetic, Dzeko and Negredo have all cost a lot considering output. Liverpool spent huge sums on Carroll and… Read more »


except that is what we hear every year, next year, next year, next year while Arsene dithers and the obvious does not get addressed.

Arsene the professional who so clearly developed coq for the midfield destroyer role? or Arsene the lucky who stumbled upon a solution when injuries forced his hand?

Andy Mack

If the manager didn’t think Coquelin could play the DM role then he’d have been sold.
Yes it’s a surprise how good he’s been (even amongst those that knew he was good) but it’s clear the manager kept him for a reason.

Merlin's Panini

I see what you mean, although I wouldn’t compare Andy Carroll with Higuain. Carroll was a flash in the pan who only looked really good in the Championship. Falcao was already broken when he went to United. He was nowhere near as prolific for Monaco as he was for Atletico. I think you’re being a bit harsh on Dzeko and Negredo too. They were both bought for big money, but for a club who could easily afford that money. Negredo’s output was actually quite brilliant and then he suddenly fell out of favour and was shipped out on loan. Dzeko’s… Read more »

Andy Mack

Higuaín isn’t coming to Arsenal. He had the choice when he left RM and chose the mafia money from Italy instead. He won’t get a second chance.


Excellent response Santori! Reflects my thoughts exactly.


Contrary to popular opinion in certain quarters, Arsenal does not have 200m to spend. There are other dects and expenditures to factor in. 70m++ is still a substantial sum of money but we are NOT the only team that can fork out those sums for players. and with the squad complete in numbers, we are looking to add quality not bodies. Again ability and means to spend should not be confused with availability of target players. All fine and dandy to say we should get a Benzema or Cavanni but the press tend to not understand how a market works.… Read more »


Henry was not a gamble.

he was slightly expensive for the time but Wenger had worked with him and knew him inside out.

Plus comparative, he was not brought in at a high price.

And if you want to cherry pick on players you can just as easily quote the price we paid for Viera, Llungberg, Pires.

As mentioned, Wenger hardly spends exorbitantly and therefore minimises our exposure to loss through an underperforming player.

John C

He cost 24% of our income at the time, the equivalent amount today would be £75-80m.

He was the third highest transfer in the history of English football at the time.

Stop speaking nonsense.


Chill guys! Haden is the solution. You hear it here first. He has the positional awareness like Busquet, the aggressiveness of koscieny and stamina of viera. Even if Wenger buys another defensive midfielder, Hayden is the real guy to challenge coquelin. Whatch out


I say it all the time but whatever. 33 million Facebook fans. £10 donation from each is 330 million. Now I’m sure everyone of us would throw £10 for the chance at signing Pogba and Bale or an ageing ronaldo. now if we did that every season we could sign two galacticos from our OWN FANS. Failure to do so we could just reduce season tickets and food at the grounds. This i know is all a bit far fetched but think of the possibilities. Reduce the official shops merchandise prices. Just a thought.

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