On Tuesday night, Arsenal hosted the second Fans’ Forum of 2022 at Highbury House.
Taking part via Microsoft Teams, Peter Høst of Arsenal Denmark, the representative for Overseas Supporters’ Clubs, took a few notes and a transcript of Josh Kroenke’s introductory remarks.
In the aftermath of the European Super League debacle, Josh had promised to attend such meetings at least once a year and delivered on that this time around with a virtual appearance.
Here’s what the club director had to say:
“It’s been a rollercoaster of a season. I say that with a smile on my face. To think back to where we were after three matches, Mikel and the team have done an amazing job stabilising the ship. We always knew we had a very talented young bunch that would take a little time to gel and come together. We’re really optimistic we can achieve the top four and Champions League qualification, which would be a great accomplishment with this young team.
“The solid foundation that Mikel has laid has really shown for the last three matches in particular when our backs were against the wall. I want to thank you guys for sticking with us through all the ups and downs. The support home and away has been unbelievable. I hoped to see the fanbase uniting behind Mikel and a young bunch. I can feel and hear a whole new level of connection that’s going on around the club. It makes a real difference, especially for the young players, and we all want the same thing which is to be back at the top competing for the biggest trophies.
“We’ve got a lot of work ahead of us. We have plans in place to continue to strengthen the squad. Now having match day revenue back and having fans in the stadium has been great. We continue to provide whatever support we can for Mikel and continue to push the squad forward to achieve our goals.
“It’s really exciting to see the women’s team coming along as well. Arsenal continue to be at the forefront of that. It’s great to see our team pushing for the league title. We’re investing in new buildings for the women’s team, more matches to be played at the Emirates.
“A lot of positives, and I’m really excited to see in particular how we can finish our Champions League push on the men’s side. Thank you to everybody for your support.”
A few quotes & notes from the Fans’ Forum at Arsenal last night.
The meeting was held at Highbury House, with a few of us (including Josh Kroenke) attending online.
— Peter Høst (@Peterhoest) May 4, 2022
Peter covers the remarks of CEO Vinai Venkatesham on his Twitter feed and also documents the club’s answers to questions across a broad range of subjects, including:
- Amazon’s All or Nothing documentary
- The partnerships with Socios & Visit Rwanda
- Season ticket usage & ticket exchange
- Stadium renovation project
They’ve got more snippets on:
- Safe standing
- Arsenal’s kit launch
- Pre-season tours / Emirates Cup
- Arsenal Rewards
- Season ticket waiting list
Peter also wrote the following for anyone unfamiliar with how the Fans’ Forum works…
“The Fan’s Forum is a special thing. Quite a few Arsenal reps attend the meeting, and my impression is that the club is genuinely interested in having a meaningful dialogue with fans. Some of the discussions sometimes lead to small changes here and there, but most of the time it seems to me like they listen to the feedback from us and take that with them.
“Obviously, they run the club and do as they want, but during the last couple of years the discussion has evolved in a way where it makes sense to attend. For instance, they get a lot of pushback about the partnerships (Visit Rwanda / Socios etc.), but they are not afraid to answer difficult questions.
“It does not always lead to the things we fans want, but I think the forum is a good place to help them understand a bit more about what (some) fans think. And Arsenal fans will probably never agree on much, so it’s difficult to please everyone.”