Thursday, May 30, 2024

Swiss Ramble: Arsenal highly likely to post large financial loss

If you don’t already follow @SwissRamble on Twitter, you should sort that out immediately. Not only is he a fellow Arsenal fan, but when it comes to running the numbers there’s nobody better so make him your brand new friend.

In a Twitter thread this morning, he’s revealed the forest fire that are Arsenal’s finances with the expectation we’ll post a serious loss for 2019.

Some of the highlights:

– Arsenal were the only club in England’s Big Six to see revenue fall in 2018. In fact, their £38m growth since 2016 is miles lower than their main rivals, four of whom had revenue growth above £100m. Most painfully, in this time Sp*rs have closed the gap from £141m to just £10m.

– Looking at the 2018 Money League, it is striking to see that Arsenal had the worst revenue performance of all the clubs in the Top 20, falling by £30m compared to the previous year. In stark contrast, there was strong year on year growth at Liverpool £91m, Chelsea £80m, Sp*rs £74m and Man City £50m. 

Our continued absence from the Champions League is having a significant impact too.

– In the last 2 years Arsenal has earned by far the least of the Big Six in Europe, just £74m against Liverpool £189m, Sp*rs £163m and Man City £157m. Arsenal is the only club to see their European revenue fall compared to the preceding 2 years. Success on the pitch is important.

– Given that there were no major player sales in 2018/19 (only Perez, Campbell and Akpom), it is highly likely that Arsenal will report a large loss before tax for last season – the first time the club will have slipped into the red since 2002.

It’s a scary, forensic look at the state of the club’s finances, and there’s some top quality Ivan Gazidis bashing in there too, which we most definitely approve of, the rattlesnake. The full thread is below, broken up into easy pieces. Are you ready to be heartbroken?

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The only good that can come from this is that either Stan invests in new talent (highly unlikely) or maybe… just maybe… he thinks about selling here soon. That would be incredible and hopefully we’d get someone in who has true sporting ambition and not just financial ambition.

Ya gooner

Can you really call it financial ambition when our finances are run so poorly?

Ya gooner

He’s just a shit owner through and through with no redeeming qualities the hunting wanker.


Can deers learn to pick up arms and shoot back? 😀


Not to go on a rant here, but honestly, what have we been doing? Surely Arsenal must do some sort of in house month end or quarter end financial reporting which would show the Clubs present financial standings against its 12 month business plan? Those current figures would be used to create a real time projection of where the Club are going to end up come the turn of the year. Those findings are then reported directly up the chain to the corporate company for further executive decisions to be made if needed. So I can’t imagine that Arsenal don’t… Read more »

Eric Blair

I get the silver lining perspective, but why would he sell when his investment keeps increasing in value regardless of onfield performance? And why would he bother putting more money and energy into it? He’s not an Arsenal fan.

Pat Rice and Beans

Unfortunately @Eric is right.
Despite the operational financial loss, the ever growing money influx in the PL plus the increase in the land value in London maintain Arsenal’s properties valuation on a high, therefore AFC as an asset keeps increasing in value.

That’s similar in Newcastle: Mike Ashley is happy to keep the PL status as long as the club increase in value due the highly tv deals.


Yeah it’s the lack of sporting ambition that should make us heartbroken. I struggle to see why we should be heartbroken about financials though. The fact of the matter is Premier League clubs are mostly in good health due to the TV deal, and the top 6 have a financial advantage over most of our rivals in Europe. Arsenal will still gonna spend about 200m on wages this year, which is enough to build a competitive team. Our stadium is still top 3 in Europe for match-day revenue generation and we have new sponsorship revenue. Please, let’s stop pretending we’re… Read more »


If you haven’t noticed, financial considerations have really helped Manchester City’s sporting ambitions. They’ve also really helped Liverpool – 130 million pounds went a long way to resolving their Klopp-era defensive issues. It’s naive to think football clubs aren’t competing as much off the pitch for financial considerations as they are on the pitch playing football. Spending money is no guarantee of success, but spending a lot of money can buy you success. Look north. While it is overwhelmingly clear that Wenger and Co. failed to manage the club in a sound fashion in the final few years, it is… Read more »


Man City are a corrupt plastic mess. Comparing them to Liverpool is an insult – the Scousers have a similar net spend as us in the five years before they reached the CL Final against Real. They built a strong position to spend that 130m on 2 players through smart trading, not financial doping like City.

My point is yes, money is an advantage but it’s not everything. Honestly people need to stop overdosing on negativity. Arsenal hoarded massive piles of cash for years while becoming CL regulars but rival fanbases didn’t commit mass hari-kiri did they?


My point is simply that financials have a large impact on the club; that should concern fans.

Dave Cee

Wrong. Evaluate it today and start from when walcott joined. He demolished this club with gazidis assistance. And still got paid to leave.
I.ll start Wenger knew some very good players from France, a bit about diet and stretching and attacking football. He also had some fight at the start. It worked well for a few years and he pushed for the new stadium. Since then he barely made a single good decision and transformed into Ivan were only the words matter


Arsenal are valued at £2 billion. Before splurging on players, an investor has to pay that sum to takeover the club.
For context Roman tookover at Chelsea for £140 million and has since spent £1.1 billion on player transfers. He’s still £750 million short of being able to buy Arsenal !!!
Any billionaire or consortium would prefer buying a smaller club (Man City – £200 million) and investing heavily on players. Once you pay £2 billion, you’re really looking at the returns, not at spending more money.


From my limited knowledge, the tactics he used with the LA Rams relied on moving to a bigger market and the a league system that redistributes some power and resources to underperforming teams.

Both options are not available to Arsenal.


Well no wonder when we generate absolutely peanuts from player sales and let them all go on bosmans?

It’s not just European revenue that’s decreased, I cannot recall the last player we sold for decent money. On top of that the quality players we have sold we dont get anywhere near the market value. Szeszney to Juve for example!


Maybe that is the indication of the quality of player Arsenal now has, results usually do not lie.
Arsenal is like a sports car whose owner does not have it regularly serviced and tuned. Then he expects it to win races and earn money.


Agree with some players, then you look at players like Gabriel who we sold for 3-4 million pounds less than what we bought him for and under 10 million pounds? That is absurd business from our end when Gabriel was an absolute fine defender for us. I’d much rather him in the team right now than half of our center halves.

Theo Walcott for 20million pounds in his prime? We cant even buy Ryan Fraser for that amount.

Dave Cee

Oh come on..we were lucky to get anything for theo fuckin walcott. He was on massive wages


Even worse when he realizes this sport car is Fiat Multipla


Ox for £35m. Even though I massively disagreed in terms of the football side of things, and was really concerned about the reasons for his departure, it was an ok price. Though perhaps a little low considering his potential and the fact that he was homegrown.


Maybe Wenger hoped to retain those players with love


At this point, I think bringing in Gordon Ramsey to shout at people is the only option.

Michael Bolton Wanderers

Would love to see him squeezing kroenkes head with two pieces of bread while shouting “what are you? You’re an idiot sandwich!”


But we let Ramsey go for free.


We cant even keep hold of a shouty chef.

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

It seems we’ve entered a vicious cycle that the owner is not willing to do anything to break.
Basically he’s expecting the coach and the players to outperform better teams with the hope that we break in the CL again…


Have fallen out of love with this club recently, we are awful, from top to bottom, deserve nothing and get it in spades.

Peter Story Teller

Men’s team and management I agree entirely. We should all switch our attention to Boreham Wood and get behind the women who have an excellent squad, manager, and actually win competitions!
Let’s hope their success is not ruined by the financial fleecing of the club as a whole.


I’m with you started watching the women’s team a couple of years ago and thoroughly enjoy it, they work hard and win, something the men’s team stopped doing a long time ago!


God this is depressing,not long before Spurs overtake us.
Love all the Lloyd Cole references though.Arsenal are badly in need of a brand new friend(owner)
Kroenke out.


They already have


So much for being sustainably run! The failures of the Kronke era are legion but near the top of the pile has to be charging some of the most expensive season tickets in the world, in the richest football league in the world, and still running at a loss! And every season we remain out of the CL, the worse it will get until we shift the big earners off the books. Hopefully this motives him to sell up to someone competent…


What a sad read. Our club slowly sinking while the useless scum bullshited the fans after our stadium move with stories of how were gonna compete with the best. Mondays are bad enough on their own, but im really pissed off now!


What do people in here think? How bad do you think it has to be financially for Kroenke to consider selling. Implementing radical new strategy seems out of the question. So I guess pulling out is the only potion. But how far down the trajectory lane do we need to go? Or is it fine being a middle ground team like The Rams for ages? Waiting for succes to come back? And can you even draw that parallel? is he more emotionally invested in that Football team that us?

Eric Blair

I have the answer to all of this. We are fucked.


He’s a real estate developer. Just holding onto the real estate and seeing the value increase is good enough for him, so fat chance of getting rid of him.

Thomas b

Well, everything is for sale at the right prize. But am not sure there are anyone out there who are able or willing to put that amount on the table. I must say am quite worried about the state of our club atm.


It’s weird that we’re becoming a cautionary tale of ineptitude when for years we were the bastion of what a well run club should be and the shining light for ‘doing it the right way’.


As long as frickin’ Kroneike (however you spell the bums name), we are not going to winning squat. He could give a damn about Arsenal. I bet if you asked for his opinion on Ozil, he’d tell you “oh yeah Ozil, he’ll score at least 10 touchdowns this year, minimum”.

Eric Blair

Wow, this looks like trouble. I knew things were bad under Gaslightidis, but this is even worse than I had imagined. Failure to qualify for CL last season in this context now looks ruinous. I wonder what Kronke makes of it all? All performance measurements, sporting and financial, are absolutely appalling when compared to our rivals, and the mismanagement over the past decade is leaving even a top 6 position in danger, yet the club increases in value nonetheless. Kronke may well be totally content with this slide into mediocrity as when he looks at the bottom line he is… Read more »

Ya gooner

It makes one wonder whether the players/manager knew of our financial woes and if that contributed to our awful run at the end of last season. Extra pressure… or maybe I’m giving them too much of the benefit of the doubt.


Run a shambolic crew of corporate misfits. Criminal. Everyone at the top should be sacked but nope, they’ll enjoy a fat pay check year on year while our beloved Arsenal breaks apart.

We’re getting to mid level mediocrity faster than i think we would. Oh well..


So uhm… where’s that African billionaire fella who stated couple years ago that he’s gonna try to take over the club from Kroenke in years to come?


That was Dangote.
He has repeated it recently again.
He is a football fan but then he might start picking the team!
We are screwed.


Nobody saw that coming.

Dazza C

Unfortunately I think things are going to get worse before they get better. Years of bad planning and decisions have led us here.

Cant see Silent Stan selling, all we are is an ever increasing asset to him. He doesn’t care about a league position, never has. Look at the Colorado Rapids, Stans other football team, 2nd bottom of the Western MLS. Hopefully not a sign of things to come


Gazidis failed. That’s basically what I understand from the numbers. The decline was progressive and he clearly lacked the capacity to do something about it as CEO. Probably explains why he fled cos new people saw him for what he really was. A shitty stuffed shirt.
Also clearer picture of the ramsy situation. We simply don’t have money.
Way forward, project youth season 2. We all need to be realistic in our expectations.
Thanks Swiss ramble for the education.


Too easy to blame Gazidis. There was plenty of time to rectify the situation with Ramsey but current team Raul (and recently departed Mslintat) compounded issues if not made them worse. We could not buy in January to reinforce Emery. This was a MAJOR issue. We had entered the Panic Loan era because these two took their eyes off the ball and our wage structure was over loaded. nothing to do with Gazidis at this point, Mslintat and Raul were a couple of seasons in already. Pointing the finger at Gazidis misses the point. You believe these sort of myths… Read more »

Dave Cee

Itbwas gazidis who loaded the wage bill…auba, ozil, mkhi. Nothing to do with raul

Make Arsenal Great Again

We’re managing to lose money in a booming football environment.


3 seasons out of CL is tricky with players on massive wages. Wage issue has some elasticity this window. So the issue is whether we inject a shot in the arm now to revive our abilities and some attractiveness in market or if we continue to be anemic in market purchases, short change ourselves with hopefuls rather than ready made quality we need to claw back in next season. If we fail ourselves this summer, we will make our gaffer’s job much harder (and riskier) and we have every opportunity to drop further off of top 6. It can happen.… Read more »


The Gazidis cheerleaders need to read the entire twitter thread; we are bottom in most categories during his rein. I just wonder how Man United can make so much money despite being utterly shite since Fergie left, and being rinsed by the Glazers.

Frank Bascombe

Because they’re one of the two biggest clubs in world football.


Its not just Gazidis. Current transfer team has also been poor. But the danger is this season bc we have flattered to deceive and are out of CL 3rd season consecutive, this time we cannot blame Wenger. The easy thing is to blame Gazidis and Wenger but the work done after them has been equally shoddy and the structure currently is MORE worrying. You’d have to be very conceited to believe in simple myths like Gazidis or Wenger were the ones at fault or Mustafi or Ozil. There is a lot more to it. Until people open their eyes, its… Read more »

Dave Cee

Wenger and Gazidis were the ones with ultimate authority. They were supposed to be overseeing everything. And they did a terrible job


The only thing that will save this club is really good, stylish, enjoyable to watch football on the pitch every week, as we’ve got to ensure that the sponsors and broadcasters still value the Arsenal brand. That, and CL football. We did it for 20 years straight, so it shouldn’t be so utterly revolutionary for the club to back there. Hopefully Ljungberg can push Emery into an attacking mindset and a renewal of flash to our football.

Jordan Gooner

Swiss Ramble, am excellent analysis you do not need to be a genius to understand where the problems are: Letting players leave for nothing, apart from the The Ox and Walcott. Sanchez Ramsey Wiltshire Welbeck etc That is minimum loss of £120 million. Poor buys: Mustafi Xhaka even the Miki deal with Sanchez,Miki high wages. Also the wages to Ozil purportedly £18 million a year! Bloody ridiculous. No Champions league for 3 seasons. The Commercial deals, we were locked into poor deals, however at least that is now changing and improving. We are already, sorting out the wages, and getting… Read more »


You said it. The issues already prevalent some time back but compounded in recent seasons. Last couple of seasons, we over loaded the wage structure (plus of course lack of CL meant we took a hit commercially) 40m current (rumoured) budget is little and we need to generate on player sales. BUT who will pay for players we don’t feel are up to scratch? Alternatives need to be there to generate the extra 20-25m.. Which means there is no Mustafi or Ozil MUST go. Sure if there is a buyer great but we need to sell at a certain price… Read more »


Arsene was Kroenke’s cash cow, but the magic to unearth gems, and turn over huge profits on player sales eventually ran out. We’re now left with few sellable assets, and little to-no cash flow, due to our over inflated wage bill. Whoever’s responsible for this mess? Has zero understanding of the basic economic principle of supply and demand. I fear we’ll end up with a perpetual revolving door of head coaches, but I believe our main problems are structural, quality and squad balance, not coaching. Our business model sucks, and whilst we can change the model, and there are signs… Read more »


Arsene was brilliant at finding talent and polishing gems. Sure he made some very poor buys (mainly in defense where he tended to be his own worse enemy and short changed himself) but on the whole he spent low and sold high (which is why we got the stadium) However he was too conservative in market and tended to be too spendthrift. He’s best quality also his worse one. But the people brought in to support him and eventually replace his know how were poor. Raul was a “Director of Football relations”. I’m not sure what that means for football… Read more »


The big gest owner has neither passion or heart for the Gunners. Í sure hope he will sell ASAP ?

Fed Up Gooner

Someone else said it right — Kroenke doesn’t care as long as the club increased in value. There are three facts that may change Kroenke’s analysis. First, Arsenal 2019-2020 probably is worth less than Arsenal 2017-2018. If Arsenal does not find a way to the Champions League for 2020-2021, then Arsenal 2020-2021 is worth a lot less than Arsenal 2017-2018. Kroenke’s theory of increasing value has failed, perhaps spectacularly. Second, as long as Arsenal can’t play anything but mid-table football, are season ticket holders going to continue to renew? I foresee a lot of tickets not being renewed, perhaps as… Read more »


Bring back David Dean right now.

SLC Gooner

Argh. Read through the Twitter thread. It’s grim reading. Pretty clear from that, and reinforced by today’s blog post that our failure to get returns from sales of both young and experienced players is hurting us. Letting the Jeff and Gnabry go for pennies was terrible business. Same with Ramsey. About the only really good sale we’ve had in recent years was Ox. And it even more emphasizes the colossal screw-up that the end of the season was. Not so much the loss in the EL final, though that was painful. The failure to get 2 more points from a… Read more »


They let all the good players go for nothing.

Instead of holding a gun to the OX when Gnabry was itching for first team, we ended up losing both.

Instead of playing Ozil against Ramsey when we lost Sanchez (right thing of course), we ended up giving away too much to Ozil and giving away Ramsey for nothing.

And then forget Mustafi or Ozil who at least have some use to the squad (if at exorbitant cost), we have players like Jenkinson and Elneny who are wholly useless to us still hanging around.


So Gazidis earnt £2.5 million a year to put Arsenal in dissaray.


The brand has taken a hit. We have been out of CL for 3 seasons. This third season seem to promise some improvement over previous incumbent but not. If we try to be stingy and buy poorly this season expect : 1) Unai’s job will be even harder. He may leave which is not necessarily a good thing. We may drop further down the pack. 2) We won’t be convincing anyone. The sort of players we have no longer strike the imagination. 3) Vicious spiral as some of our top assets will also be less convinced and prey to departure… Read more »


We left it all to one man, and that one man blew away our former strict wage principles in hope to finish his long run in charge with a title. He will always be remembered as a legend, but not as one that stayed loyal to his principles to the very end, the last 2 years with AW was torture for his legacy and our identity. Had we had an owner that had any kind of clue we would have been much better of, but Stan clearly is nothing of the man we require. yes maybe he will open his… Read more »

Dave Cee

So, a total shitshow on and off the pitch. Wankers the lot of them. Especially Gazidis, to imagine i didn.t want him to go lmao. Wenger takes his share of the blame too. Mismanagement all round

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