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Get out of our club, get out of our club, Stan Kroenke, get out of our club – and Ferguson weighs in with support!

By Tony Attwood

It has taken a while, but finally the move was made away from endless sniping at the manager and instead turning on a target, the removal of which could indeed open up a new era in the history of Arsenal.

If there were banners and protests and aeroplanes flying over the trailing messages of the type we have seen for so long, I didn’t see them, and no one seemed to mention them.  Instead on the hour, it all came together, the one simple song, sung over and over again, that points the finger in the right direction.  Not only pointing at the person who really has caused the problems, but pointing a way forward.

The media were of course caught out, for they have been utterly reliant on the “Wenger Out” campaign by the anti-Arsenal Arsenal (aaa) for so long they could hardly imagine anything else.  The Daily Mail manages to mention what happened at the stadium in the 9th paragraph of their report, and the Independent slipped in a line near the end.  The Telegraph does the same, although it manages to get the chant wrong – which is a bit bizarre given that it only has two lines in it.   One can only suspect that their man had long since gone to the pub.

The Guardian however does come good and not only reports the events properly but also recognises the significance of the disappearance of all the anti-Wengerian paraphernalia and its replacement by one single message.  Maybe they were slightly prepared by our articles before the game.

But the fact remains finally the message has got through: you can change the manager and maybe see an improvement, but if you want a radical change that is not the point.  It is the ownership wherein there is an issue.

Arsene Wenger said after the game, in relation to the protests run by the aaa and the media alliance,

“We played since January in a very difficult environment for different reasons.  Some obviously that you know about, and that is very difficult for the group of players to cope with that. Some other reasons we will talk about another day. But the psychological environment for the group of players was absolutely horrendous. It has been difficult.”

Writing all this does not make me a fan of Mr Usmanov (as numerous articles from 2008 onwards show), it makes me simply a fan of not doing it things Kroenke’s way.  I must admit that I had hoped when Kroenke took over – and indeed when I didn’t know too much about him – he would turn out to be a different sort of owner.  But he hasn’t.

David Dein brought Arsene Wenger to Arsenal and then later introduced Stan Kroenke in the hope that Kroenke’s funds might be useful to Arsenal if newly enriched Chelsea were not blown away by legislation controlling football expenditure (which of course it wasn’t.)   It was, I believe, also hoped that Kroenke’s money could help fund the club and keep it competitive during the years of paying off the stadium cost – although it is often said that when Danny Fiszman was selling his shares he was not aware of who the final owner was going to be.  Sadly, with share dealings that is often the way.

Indeed at first Arsenal stood firm, and the wonderfully bumbling Peter Hill-Wood made his little speech about not wanting Kroenke’s “sort” at the club.   Eventually the board got rid of Dein for inviting in Kroenke, then went and invited in Kroenke themselves.

What makes this interesting is that the original ideals of the club, of having the club owned by a range of people, not one dominant shareholder, had at least to some small degree, been maintained until that point.  In the original Woolwich Arsenal club there was a rule that anyone who owned a single £1 share could stand for elections (which were held each year) to the board of directors.   Even Henry Norris, when he took over the effective running of the club when the club ran out of funds in 1910, did not have a majority stake.  No one person in fact controlled Arsenal, until the board sold the club to Kroenke.   It means that Kroenke can and will spend Arsenal’s money however he wants doing what he wants.

So is Kroenke in there forever?

Certainly with the old board having agreed to sell their shares to him, he is going to be very hard to get rid of, but it is possible if the aaa and their media allies can be held at bay for long enough to make Kroenke the story, it could be done.

Of course he might choose to sell out to Usmanov, and it is more than likely that Usmanov’s bid of £1bn is merely an opening position, and that Usmanov will come back with a higher bid.  However we should perhaps not get too carried away with this, for three reasons.

One thing is that Mr Usmanov’s past activities come with a range of issues that, shall we say, raise questions of a rather serious nature.  The second is that replacing one billionaire shareholder with another does not guarantee anything at all.

And the third is that the media has had such a wonderful free ride on the back of the aaa for years that they are hardly going to let it go.   If the aaa continue to make their protests the centre of everything, the media will certainly follow, and next season we’ll have more of the same as this season.

But here’s an oddity to end with.  Sir Alex Ferguson had a comment yesterday, saying “There’s no evidence that sacking a manager brings success,” – a line he might have picked up from Untold!  He continued, “but there is evidence that Arsène Wenger, myself and Brian Clough can bring success with long-termism.  I wonder, really, do they realise the job that Arsène has done?

“He has come through a forest of criticism for months now and he has never bowed. He has sailed right through. He has shown a determination, a stubbornness. That is a quality.

“I’m not sure they’ll ever get another manager like that. It’s quite easy to say, ‘Yeah, get rid of him’, but who are they going to get who is going to keep that club the way they are, the way they’ve been for the last 20 years?

“I feel sorry for him, because I think he’s shown outstanding qualities in how he’s handled the situation. I don’t know many that could have done that.”

 

69 comments to Get out of our club, get out of our club, Stan Kroenke, get out of our club – and Ferguson weighs in with support!

  • GoonerDave

    You are right to blame the owner, but wrong to absolve the manager.
    A fair case can now be made that AW should leave the club for footballing reasons. That is up for debate and rightly so. People on both sides of that debate have valid points to make and should be listened to.
    What I don’t understand is why nobody cares that we were lied to year after year. We were charging top money but not competing at all. Arsene Wenger toed the company line and sided with the money men. He signed secret contracts with the banks – therefore he was not accountable to anyone and effectively un-sackable.
    So Stan has used the fans’ money to pay the debt off his asset and Arsene has knowingly lied repeatedly to all of us.
    The lot out. Every one of them out.

  • nicky

    One of your best posts Tony.
    A dire warning that swapping one owner for another doesn’t assure success.
    And the same goes for managers.
    BE WARNED you doom and gloom purveyors on these pages. 😉

  • Gar

    To be honest I would be happy with Usmanov buying out Kroenke IF rather than financial doping, his approach was to modernize the club structure- Wenger needs someone to fulfill the role David Dein used to have at the club, Wenger has worked with a director of football before it’s just Dein didn’t have DOF as his official job title.
    Kroenke’s approach is to buy teams as a property developer would buy houses he wants to get as much rent as possible and flip it for the maximum amount of money he can, trust me once Usmanov makes a bid that gets close to Kroenke’s magic number Silent Stan will be off to buy Malaga or Sevilla having made a nice profit off the Club, fans and having made Wenger his human shield

  • Gar

    Sided with the money men? Fulfilled his contractual obligations more like, anyone can read their contract of employment and find the part about not being able to disclose Company information and whistleblowing.
    Do you honestly believe Wenger signed secret deals with banks on behalf of the club? He’s a manager NOT a board member with the authority to do that. The only things he signed were agreements to stay as manager during the Emirates move.

  • josh

    well said GoonerDave

  • Leon

    GoonerDave
    What are the “secret contracts with the banks” that Wenger has signed? And if they’re that secret how do you know so much about his business dealings which made him “effectively un-sackable”?

  • Pat

    Thanks for publishing SAF’s comments. I feared the worst when I saw him in the title, but he has stuck by Arsene Wenger, just as Arsene Wenger has always stuck by other football managers.

    Arsene Wenger has always expressed his regrets when managers have lost their jobs, and refused to be drawn into negative comments about other managers – although he has at times in the past expressed a justified criticism of the playing style of the kick em brigade.

    Sadly, these qualities of solidarity have been somewhat lacking in certain other managers.

  • josh

    fergie was being cheeky, didn’t Brian clough relegated nottingham forest? and why didn’t he stay when it was apparent his time was up.

  • Pat

    I cannot understand anyone who says we were ‘not competing at all’. We were in the Champions League for the whole of the period when we were repaying the Emirates and got close to trophies several times.

  • Block 6

    So if you have been so far ahead of the race knowing the real problem was Kroenke why have you waited for everyone else to demonstrate? Why has untold not been out there with its anti Kroenke banners ? Is it because this site is all theory and stats but none of you actually do anything other than trot out your snum diatribe and slap each other on the back ?

  • MickHazel

    Pat
    The people who claim we were not competing and would be happy if only we were are being dishonest, because even if we had been pipped at the post by a single point every season they would change their moaning from not competing to not winning.
    The fact is they are serial moaners and would never be happy unless we won every trophy year in year out.

  • Gar

    We are after all in our third FA cup final in four years. Wenger will become the most successful FA cup manager with 7 if we win as well. Perspective is sadly lost on many people who must think competing means coming second on goal difference.

  • Knobby

    A new owner would have got rid of Wenger and not stood by him.
    When he does retire it will be interesting to see how good an owner Kronkie is when he has to put a new regime in place.

  • Steve

    Why will Sir Aex insist that Wenger is the best for Arsenal? He could not deliver the league title to the club for more than ten years. Why did Man U sack Moyes and Van Gaal? His comment is targeted to make Arsenal Perrinial failure.

  • Gar

    Look at his ownership of the other teams in his portfolio. Kroenke couldn’t give a monkeys, ownership of a team is the be all and end all for him, team performance doesn’t matter one bit.

  • Sammy The Snake

    For once, I agree with Ferguson!
    However, if Stan is the main problem at the club, AW should have spoken out earlier. But maybe he knows things we don’t.

  • colario

    OT
    Is there anywhere in the media that praises Arsenal for winning 3-1 when playing 75 minutes of the game with only 10 players on the pitch?

  • Matt

    Colario

    The press will concentrate on the story and the result was not the story yesterday.

    Managers contract, players contracts, ownership of the club & missing the CL they are the current stories for the press and the fans.

  • Knobby
    I guess u think totenham and liverpool h’ve turned the tables on arsenal.
    if wenger left all these teams will be fighting 4 his signature.

  • Arthur

    Tony

    It is not clear to me from the article why you do not like Kroenke. Please explain.

    thanks

  • Knobby

    Kwzariel….

    No I am firmly behind Arsené, I believe that a new owner would struggle with such a powerful successful manager at the helm and would have chose not to renew his contact.
    That is one reason I don’t mind Kronkie, I don’t really know what he has done wrong, he took a couple of relatively small payments a couple of years ago.
    Apart from that I think he has given Arsené a decent amount of funds.
    M
    Wenger normally seeks value in the transfer market. Arshavin is still Arsenals fifth biggest signing, only four players in 8 years cost more.
    Keeping up with the oilers etc with that budget is nothing short of remarkable.

  • knobby
    sorry my bad

  • Menace

    GoonerDave – ‘we were lied to’. When did anyone speak to you to lie? You read some bullshit in the press & assume it is Gods honest truth. There is nothing that Wenger has done that has not been with the clubs interest at its heart.

    ‘We were charging top money but not competing at all’ . That is a load of absolute bollocks & you should be shamed to have made such a statement with that moniker. Our boys have got broken bones & trophies to prove competition. You & your ilk of ill informed, under educated, assuming ‘supporters’ should walk away, rethink & then decide if you support the club.

  • Menace

    I am with Tony on this in that Kronke is the lesser of two evils. Kronke buys a club or it stock & sits on it without emotion. He is driven by $$$$. Usmanov is a nice bloke but a dodgy businessman. He is ruthless in his approach. There are aspects that prevent the likes of Usmanov getting into English football. Strangely there are some worse than Usmanov that have got in without fanfare & are washing huge amounts of dirty money.

    I suppose English Football has become the worlds financial laundry & nobody cares a hoot.

  • Josif

    Excellent piece, Tony.

    Arsene will never turn his back to anyone associated with him. Whilst managers like Big Fat Sam think Code d’honneur is some fancy French meal they would have never order because it’s preposterous, Arsene lives by The Code. How many ex-players have stabbed him in the back and he hasn’t once said (to my knowledge, that is) about any of those players: “Oh, fu.ck him! I reshaped my whole team to accommodate him and made him a player he is today only for lying snake to bite me!”

    No, that’s not Arsene’s way to hide behind the others. He takes the heat for others. Whether it’s right or wrong he now takes the heat for Stan Kroenke is one thing but the respect he deserves for doing so should only get bigger.

  • Arthur, my point has generally been that yes, it is sad that the club has fallen from the astonishing levels of the early Wenger years with its doubles and unbeaten season. However I still recognise the extraordinary ability of Wenger at keeping the club in the Champions League and of late winning the FA Cup twice and getting us to another final. I don’t think the fault is with Wenger, but the reality is that we now have 3 clubs who can utterly outspend us on new players either from their own income (Man U) or from the owners’ funds (Man C, Chelsea). I had hoped at first that FFP would nullify the Chelsea/Man C approach but Uefa has backed off, so clearly we need to have the funds. If we can combine that with the amazing ability of Wenger to bring through youth players, then we can compete. But Kronenke does not release funds – rather he removes them. I still think the model of changing manager every time something goes wrong is itself wrong, and spending alone is not a solution, but it is now part of the solution because of the action of Man C and Chelsea. It is still not just about money, and not just about transfers (because as I have always argued transfers don’t bring immediate payback) but I think we should fight to keep Alexis and Ozil and bring a couple more top players in. Kroenke should be paying for the investment in the new academy facilities, leaving the club free to spend its profits on some transfers.

  • Block 6, I don’t think I have ever said we are so far ahead, and certainly if you read the previews to the match – which being previews were published before the match, they were primarily about Kroenke. Indeed at the start I thought Kroenke was possibly a force for good, and I thought that he put on a good show at the first AGM he spoke at, but over time my opinion changed. I also felt that while the aaa and their media pals were engaged in self-promotion, there was a good reason to wait for the right moment to write against Kroenke.

    I don’t go to Red Action meetings, nor do I see their email exchanges, but it appears Untold was thinking along similar lines to them in the week building up to this match.

  • Gooner S

    @GoonerDave

    Perhaps you know more than I but I’m not aware of Arsene Wenger lying about anything. When the contract for the stadium build was announced I immediatley thought a few things:

    1: The team would struggle for investment..we did.
    2: We would be hampered for 10 years at least…we were
    3: We would fall out of the top 5 in that time….we didn’t
    4: We would not compete for the league in that time…. we could have won the league

    To my mind Arsene Wenger did a fantastic job during these years. Of course he cant say that Arsenal has no money to spend and if he personally had to make commitments to stay so that Arsenal could get funding for the stadium then he should be applauded and thanked.

    Since we have come out of that period (we still owe money on the stadium by the way) we have won the FA Cup twice, we’re in a third FA Cup final and we came runners up in the League. Would I have liked us to have won the league and done better in the Champions league…yes but all in all I’m OK with Arsenal.

    I support the manager because of all the moaning and insults and bitching that has been happening for a while now (years) and started unjustly during that 10 year period I refer to. I didn’t listen or support those views then and I don’t now. I guess I’m as stubborn as our Manager.

  • Arselegacy

    EL Provides a new challenge for us.

  • insideright

    What many seem to forget is that Kroenke is not an owner who just appeared out of the ether with no history of involvement with sports clubs or track record of style of ownership.
    He sat on the AFC board for two years before buying the Club direct from existing shareholders. His initial statement emphasised that he liked the way the Club was run and was specifically asking the existing directors to stay on and continue in the same vein.And so it has been.
    Complaining about a lack of ‘investment’ from him is somewhat strange given the fact the Financial Fair Play rules mean that the sort of ‘investment’ undertaken at Chelsea and Man City in the past is no longer permitted.
    But that hasn’t stopped the Club spending more in the transfer market and on salaries than ever before. At the same time training facilities have been upgraded significantly while putting aside revenue to pay known future debts. It’s called custodianship and it has been proved to work rather well in keeping clubs solvent and maintaining a presence at or near the top while others fall by the wayside.
    If it’s too much long term thinking for some then I for one would rather lose them than those brave enough to play the long game.

  • Gunz

    Tony, are you saying that Kronke is this reason for Arsenal not progressing. His lack of funding on football matters(players wages, big money players, etc) is the reason why we get poor results from PGMOL refereed games and an anti-Arsenal bias?
    I’m in no way pro or anti Kronke, but how would changing the owner make matters better?

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    If there is a lingering problem in one’s house, company or industry that’s affecting progress in his house, his company or his industry, does the owner continue to sit on the problem that is regressing progress in his house, company or industry and should not try to address the problem properly to stop it from regressing progress in his house, company or industry?

    Under the management of the current Arsenal being headed by Kroenke as the Director and his football team being managed by Le Prof, Arsenal FC has largely remained in stagnant position for 13 seasons consecutively not winning any of the big titles of the EPL or the Champions League in which they’ve been taking part for the past 13 seasons. By it’s status as one of the 9 super clubs in Europe according to Uefa ranking, or is it by Fifa? Arsenal ought to have won the EPL at least 5 times in the last 13 seasons in which they’ve not won it. And at least they ought to have won the CL twice since they last played in the final in 2006 eleven seasons ago.

    Then what’s the problem with Arsenal not been able to win any of these two big titles for 13 seasons? Save the FA Cup it’s managed to win back to back in three seasons to pacified angry and irate Arsenal fans, Arsenal fans have been dribbled seasons after seasons promising us that, they will win the PL title next next next… seasons. This same logic is being started sold to Arsenal fans already after our end of the season match against Everton to buy when Le Prof was reported to be saying he’ll keep 90% of his current squad next season and possibly add two quality ones to it after which he’s sure Arsenal will win the PL title next season.

    We can’t just be watching the same scenaros play over and over again with nothing much tangible to show for it, then remain silent and accept the ugly situation to continue to prevail. Something positive had to be thought off and if thought off successfully, force it to bear on the club to enforce a change from the status qou to make remarkable progress happen at Arsenal. NO! Kroenke MUST sell his shareholding at Arsenal to a passionate football investor who is prepared and ready to move Arsenal to the next level. It could be Usmanov who fits into this bill I don’t know but he has shown the passion he’s passionate for Arsenal to be more successful.

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    Good point.

  • finsbury

    Some very loud songs in praise of Ozil during that second half yesterday.

    Did the vocal support inspire him to slightly higher levels? I think everyone knows the answer. That match was essentially the Mesut Ozil appreciation show, Ramsey showing the highest level of appreciation with that finish: woof!

    Loud songs, clearly audible, in praise of “Arsene Wenger’s man”.

    I was listening! 😉

  • Josif

    As for the last game vs Everton…

    Have you seen a single piece where the fact Arsenal got their third victory with 10 men this season?

    Or a question mark over Spuds’ ability to avoid a red card in the league for 80 (!!!) games in a row?

  • Alexanderhenry

    The ‘situation’ fergie is alluding to is the penny pinching, negligent, way arsenal has been run since kroenke got involved.

    The Usmanov bid has been- ironically- an actual ‘catalyst for change’.

    Most fans now realise kroenke ‘s been the main problem all along.

    The next step is for paying fans to devise a way of getting rid of the guy.

    I’m afraid the only way is for a substantial section ofseason ticket holders not to renew.

  • Arthur

    Thanks Tony for the explanation. Please can you explain how you can still support Wenger as Arsene has said several times that the club should be self-financed.

  • Arsenal_62

    clutching at straws, aren’t you tony? Quoting SAF to defend His Lordship? you will blame the entire universe, the opposition, the FA, the refs, the players, the owner, the media, the journalists; only one person remains sacred, perfect, unblemished within all this turmoil. A few days ago, alexis was a flawed character, just like RVP must be in your mind. How dare he question his lordship ? Open your eyes, tony… for once, be an unbiased person.

  • Polo

    Tony, usually I agree with your points and articles but this one I disagree. To say Kroenke is the main problem is quite harsh. The Club decided on a self-sustaining model and they are doing just that, self-sustaining. I believe in the long run this model will greatly benefit the Club as it does not need an owner to fund its survival. My understanding is that a lot of other Clubs would like to emulate Arsenal’s self-sustaining model and many had praise the Club for doing it. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think Chelsea is beginning to move towards self-sustaining.

  • Rockette

    The problem with this post and many others is that it’s not ‘our club’. It actually belongs to the shareholders and the majority of shares are owned by Kronke.
    Going to watch sport and paying to do so is a choice – it doesn’t entitle one to anything other than watching the game. There is no more entitlement than that.
    Football at this level is a business and the only time a business would really worry was if it lost customers. But, in this case, the customers (supporters) are almost irrelelevant because the TV companies are falling over themselves to provide armchair supporters with the product worldwide. The receipts from the stadiums are not nearly as significant as they once were. When Arsenal Wenger originally wanted to build the Emirates, the envisioned income would’ve placed Arsenal in a very strong financial position against the rest of the top tier clubs. It hasn’t had that desired effect because of the colossal TV funds which dwarf the funds supplied by supporters who watch live games.
    So, the complainers who have had a negative effect on the teams’ performance aren’t going to achieve board or managerial change.

  • robl

    We could be Blackburn, Blackpool, Hull, Watford, Leeds, or Forest. There’s a starting point to be optimistic.
    It would also appear to be key to find out what Mr Wenger is alluding to about behind the scenes issues.

  • Leon

    Rockette
    It was Hill-Wood & Fiszman (and other board members) who “originally wanted to build the Emirates” and Wenger/Dein took a lot of convincing on the eventual design.

  • Rockette

    Leon

    I’m sure you’re right but the pertinent point is ‘why’ it was built.

  • Leon

    Rockette
    Ok. Sorry, my error, but I thought you were subscribing to the popular “Wenger built the Emirates myth”.

  • Arsenal 62 I think we just see the world utterly differently. I thought the Ferguson comment was interesting; I don’t fully subscribe to it. And as for being unbiased – no, I studied psychology where one of the first things one learns is that all human observation is biased. There is no alternative to bias.

  • Rockette

    Leon

    It’s interesting that both Spurs and Chelsea are going to do exactly the same thing having seen that a fantastic stadium hasn’t worked out for Arsenal as expected. It probably won’t bother Chelsea with virtually unlimited funds but Spurs???

  • Mandy Dodd

    Nice one Tony.
    Kroenke is as he is, not sure he ever made himself out to be much else, but he is WRONG for Arsenal, and probably a number of his other clubs.
    He shows zero ambition, zero care and attention, zero interest. He and his board allow wenger to take on far too much, however willing Wenger may be, i suspect he is spread thinly way beyond best practice for a football manager at this level.
    2017 has been very badly handled, notice wenger yesterday had a bit of a pop at the board, who really need to stop hiding behind him.
    Kroenke is now in the spotlight, i am sure he wont like that…he, for once in his tenure responded quickly enough with his statement. There are rumours even his son plus a couple board members want negotiations with usmanov, whether AU…or the other mystery bidders are the answer is debatable, but think we are reaching some sort of tipping point, a fire has been lit, and could even unite much of the fanbase. Sadly, if Kroenke does sell, i would expect wenger to go as well, some clearly see him tainted under kroenkes tenure, however inadvertently for a man who just does his best by the club. Usmanov claims huge respect for wenger, dont doubt him, but i wonder if such a change will mean a parting of ways between the man and Arsenal. Not even convinced wenger will stay at this point even if kroenke does nothing, especially should things go badly at the weekend.
    Despite his statement this morning, I am quite sure a man like Kroenke has his price, especially if it is also a buy out of fan revolt.
    but we shall see. Change could be in the air, it could be good, bad, or just change.
    One positive should Usmanov arrive, think we may see improved refereeing coming our way

  • Leon

    Rockette
    Beats me how Spurs got the loan, and it’s a huge, huge one. I think it must be on projected income from multi purpose use.
    I’m not sure what Arsenal’s expectations were, but I think The Emirates has been a resounding success.

  • Rockette

    Leon

    It’s.probably the best stadium in the country. You realise just how good it is if you have the misfortune to be invited to the ‘London’ stadium!

  • Mandy Dodd

    The danger with a new owner, nothing to stop a LBO, Kroenke certainly wouldn’t stop that or care of he decided to sell up

  • Gunz

    “One positive should Usmanov arrive, think we may see improved refereeing coming our way”
    Yes, Usmanov will pass on the brown-envelopes of cash to the appropriate scum. If we can’t beat them, join them. Forget the Arsenal way, do it the Money way.

  • GoingGoingGooner

    I feel for the Amy Lawrences and Barney Ronays of the world as they don’t have a sword of Damocles of no Champions League Football to hold over Arsene Wenger’s head anymore. And, should he leave they won’t have any Arsenal doom and gloom to spread, at all. I don’t know who Ronay cheers for but Lawrence professes to cheer for Arsenal. I suggest that she sold out years ago and cheers for herself and her byline. I can’t remember anything from her that was not designed to pull Arsenal down. What a sad creature. She’d probably pray for rain at her sister’s wedding just to have a story to tell.

  • Gunz

    Tony
    “I had hoped when Kroenke took over – and indeed when I didn’t know too much about him – he would turn out to be a different sort of owner. But he hasn’t.”
    What “sort of owner” do we need?
    “David Dein brought Arsene Wenger to Arsenal and then later introduced Stan Kroenke in the hope that Kroenke’s funds might be useful to Arsenal if newly enriched Chelsea were not blown away by legislation controlling football expenditure (which of course it wasn’t.)”
    Is that a fact?
    “It was, I believe, also hoped that Kroenke’s money could help fund the club and keep it competitive during the years of paying off the stadium cost”
    So it was the lack of funding, during the debt paying years, that hindered the teams competitiveness and not the refereeing.

  • MikeT

    Rockette
    The financing of any stadium build is a complex business . As for Spurs they still haven’t announced details of how the project is to be fully financed although the suggestions is an announcement is imminent.
    It seem that the £800 million bill is not for the completed project the residential properties and indeed the hotel build are not fully included.
    What I did find interesting is the sum quoted is not a fixed price and over run or indeed additional costs are fully on Spurs.
    As for time lines it seems the main indicator will be in January / very early February for if the roof isn’t in situ by mid Feb the likelihood of a second season at Wembley is near enough certain.

  • Leon

    GoingGoingGooner
    Here’s a nice article by Amy Lawrence. It’s a very recent one and all about Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain. Want one about Ozil? Can do. Sanchez? Also can do. I can even provide the one that Tony objects to so much for you to see that it’s completely harmless and supportive of him in his own complaints that his team was not scoring enough goals.
    I don’t know what you teach or who your subjects are, but I sincerely hope that they don’t let you close to any childrenhttps://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/apr/22/alex-oxlade-chamberlain-arsenal-aaron-ramsey-fa-cup

  • Mandy Dodd

    Gunz….brown envelopes, the stuff of amateurs , was thinking more of Usmanov calling in a few favours from his mate Vladamir Putin should Atkinson, Taylor and co carry on with their ways.
    Perhaps our misbehaving refs being reassigned to the Vladivostock winter league

  • omgarsenal

    Most UA posters commenting about Kroenke do not appreciate the following;

    * He is ONLY an investor, NOT a supporter like most of us,
    * His empire includes many sports ventures and other businesses, AFC is a small fish in his very big ocean,
    * He couldn’t give a rat’s ass about what anyone here thinks,feels, cares for or whines about, he is a billionaire and married to one of the Walmart brats so he shits gold,
    * His stated purpose (often repeated in the press) was to buy into a well-run,well-managed, self-sufficient club (AFC), let the professionals run it, and make a shitload of profit when he eventually sells the club, nothing else matters to him,
    * Being a professional businessman, he lets his managers run things unless they screw up bigtime, he trusts them and they trust him NOT to interfere too much,
    * Almost everyone commenting here are rank amateurs in management and have little business acumen, with the exception of Tony…whose opinions about Kroenke are just one more view and Tony never said otherwise.

    Here are my predictions for the remainder of this season: we will give Chelsea a real run for the FA Cup and it will be a tossup right to the final whistle,Alexis, Ozil, Giroud and all the other 1,000,000 Gunners slated to transfer out will NOT do so, we will bring in a few faces like every year but only Jenkinson,Lucas, Per and Debuchy will be made available if at all. Szcezsny will go out on loan again, as will most of the loanees, including Wilshere. Wenger will sign another 2-3 years contract (his last I believe) and Kroenke will NOT sell AFC just yet.

  • para

    Looking back over the years, i can see that Arsene Wenger was left as one part of the team(with D Dein) to continue Arsenal, and this other pare was vital to Arsenal.

    Why do they not realise that between the two, AW and DD that the club would have probably soared a little higher the last few seasons.

    Facit:
    Find some way of getting D Dein back at Arsenal, this should not be hard considering the man is Arsenal through and through.

    The board, must realise that with only one half of that team, Arsenal loses something.

    So my change would be:
    Sort it out and get the “Football Duo” back at Arsenal and fighting for the club.

  • Benjamin

    These two stories from the BBC website should tell you everything you need to know about the general state of the club vs our competition…

    Arsenal have opened talks with Belgian club KAS Eupen over signing 19-year-old Nigerian Henry Onyekuru. Everton, Southampton and West Brom are also interested in the striker. (Sky Sports)

    vs

    Blues boss Antonio Conte has made signing Everton and Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku, 24, a priority in the summer, before a move for Spain and Real Madrid player Alvaro Morata, 24. (Evening Standard)

    Complete and utter lack of ambition having missed out on CL. Sniffing out a Wenger bargain player, not top talent. Which is why the squad is currently stuffed with under achieving, average quality players. With the top 2 players looking like they’re on the way out.

    It’s time that Kroenke and Wenger both packed their bags and left. Terrible owner and average manager.

  • Yellow Canary

    Whatever Kronke’s faults he didn’t tell Wenger to buy the players, nor did he train or coach them. The immediate problem for many fans is the manager, but plenty also acknowledge that once Wenger’s gone they’ll direct their ire at Kronke. We shall see what happens when Wenger departs. I’m not sure I’d like Usmanov owning the club, same reason I despise Abramovic, that he acquired dubious money most likely stolen from the Russian people. Sad to say but I don’t think Wenger cuts the mustard any more and hasn’t done for some time. But we’ll probably have him as manager next year so we’ll just have to hope he can rediscover his mojo circa 2004.

  • Polo

    @ Benjamin, and how do you know that player will not turn into a top class player? How do you think top class players become top class? Did you know who Griezmann or Aubameyang was 3 or 4 years ago?

    You should consider supporting Chelsea since they seem to fit your need.

  • Polo

    @ Leon, my understanding about the term ‘Wenger built The Emirates Stadium’ was that if it wasn’t for AW the stadium either wouldn’t have got the loan necessary to continue the construction or would have been significantly delayed or scaled back. AW and some Board members did say as part of the loan deal Arsenal had to be in the Champions League, I think this is probably one part of the business case brought to the creditors to get the loan and the creditors accepted the proposal. In addition, to help pay for the stadium Arsenal embarked on a policy of developing youngsters and sell them for a high price, coupled with Arsenal’s attractive football on the field which created a large fanbase worldwide allowing Arsenal the capability to negotiate high value spoonsorship such as Nike and the Emirates Airline. Also, contributing to the stadium debt repayment was the sale of the Highbury Apartments.

    The Emirates Stadium wasn’t Arsene’s idea however there was a debate whether AW was receptive to building the stadium or not. One argument was he wasn’t receptive to building the stadium because it would drain the funds from player recruitments or he was partially receptive but didn’t want the stadium to be extravagant. The other argument was he was receptive to the stadium build hence why he was involved in the construction of stadium from the design stage to over seeing the project to conclusion.

    Whether AW ‘built The Emirates Stadium’ or not, he played an instrumental part in getting the stadium where it is now. Please correct me if I’m wrong.

  • Jammy J

    Benjamin – My god, I genuinely didn’t realise that anyone was stupid enough to actually give any credence to all of these countless transfer rumours. Seriously, are you really that gullible? Or do you actually know that 99% of these rumours are completely fabricated and you just wanted another thing to try and bash our club with?

  • Leon

    Polo
    Yes you’re correct. My own understanding was that both Wenger & Dein were for the new stadium but wanted a more modest design than the one proposed by the other board members but were won over by Fiszman & Hill-Wood. Also the banks insisted that Wenger signed a five year deal before agreeing the funding.
    But my point is that he (Wenger ) is often wrongly credited with being solely responsible for The Emirates which would have been built anyway as Highbury could not be expanded any further due to local (Highbury Hill residents) objections.
    Did you know that in the late 1970’s Arsenal & Spurs jointly proposed building a shared stadium in Alexandra Park in the London Borough of Haringey? Obviously didn’t get approval, but they we’re thinking of it back then even

  • Polo

    @ Leon, thank you for the information, no I didn’t know that. Arsenal and Spurs owning the same stadium, what were they smoking back then? So above the stadium you will have a cannon on one side and a chicken on the other side. Cannon aiming at the chicken, would be funny.

    I accept your point about AW getting more credit.

  • Polo

    Thank you Leon for the link. Interesting read.