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Arsenal’s new manager, the myth of the new manager & the most expensive seats

By Tony Attwood

Uefa’s report analysing trends in European football, is huge.  Page after page of complex statistics and analyses.   So what does the Guardian give us as the big headline at the top of its review?

Arsenal: No 1 in Europe

“For ticket prices, that is. The Gunners boast an average “yield” per spectator of €97.8. Juventus, meanwhile, take less than half that, at €44.5, and Paris St-Germain just over a third. The figure was calculated by rolling together all different types of ticketing and, once again, English clubs dominate the list. The average gate receipt per person in the Premier League in 2015-16 was €50.1. Again, prices in Italy and France were less than half that.”

Which of course will be interpreted as meaning that Arsenal have the most expensive match day tickets in Europe.   “We’re the most expensive team to watch” will be the cry “and so we should be the best team, but we clearly are not.”

In fact “Arsenal: No 1 in Europe for ticket prices” is wholly untrue.  A complete lie.  The only thing related to this issue Arsenal are number 1 in Europe for, is the amount of money made from entrance fees on match days.  And that is not the same thing at all.

Arsenal Stadium was built knowing that there was a high demand for Premier League tickets in London, and places for the wealthy, and those with company accounts, to wine, dine and impress guests from around the world.   And of course while some guests from around the world do go to Liverpool or Manchester, mostly they come to London.

And because of the club’s position, iconic name, and long term history they know about Arsenal.  So that’s where they think of coming.

Recognising this the club opted to build a stadium that caters not only for regular fans but also for the business community that wanted to use the stadium as a business venue.

This worked incredibly well, which is why over the next two years the number of seats at Club Level is being expanded.

If you want to know which team is the most expensive to watch, what you need to do is choose a type of seat – for example you could take my season ticket seat, upstairs in the east, level with the 18 yard line, front row, and the number of games I get with my ticket (which includes a range of cup games) and compare that with exactly the same combination of position and number of games with other clubs.

If you really want to be fair you might add in a few league cup matches which in some clubs charge at full price and in other clubs are not included in the ticket.   Then you need to work it out for a few other positions – like downstairs, behind the goal at the north bank, and so on.  Then you’ll see which club has the most expensive ticket.

It is all a bit like the issue of whether a new manager helps a club when it is failing.  Eight (Everton, Leicester, Stoke, Swansea, Watford, West Brom, West Ham and Crystal Palace) out of 20 managers were given the chop this season by the time the 20th game came around.  Always with the hope that the new man will turn things around.  Since then Watford have joined the game.

And yes sometimes results pick up for a while not least because the players who have of course not been recruited by this new man, work harder, knowing that they might be dropped otherwise.  But after a while normality sets back in.

Thus every time one of the managers is sacked and the club does not go down, replacing the manager is seen as a valid tactic.  The fact that they then go down next year or the year after is neither here nor there.  That one moment when the failing manager is removed and a new man comes in and the club survives makes it fine.

And there is a little statistical point too.  Three clubs will go down this year, but nine managers have changed.  Which means that in six cases the change of manager will be deemed to have worked.

But it most likely would have worked whether the manager was sacked or not, simply because only three can go down.

Thus most of the time there is no progress, only survival.

However at some time Arsenal will need a new manager.  The favourites at the moment are

Carlo Ancelotti, Thomas Tuchel, Joachim Low, Diego Simeone, Patrick Vieira, Eddie Howe. Luis Enrique, Marco Silva, Mikel Arteta, Rafael Benitez, Lucien Favre, Ronald Koeman, Leonardo Jardim, Brendan Rodgers.

That is in the bookies odds order.

4 comments to Arsenal’s new manager, the myth of the new manager & the most expensive seats

  • John

    Some wise comments but, once again, why believe anything you read in the gruaniad, it’s always rubbish.

  • knobby

    Does anyone take into consideration the overheads, such as staff wages, business rates, policing, LEZ. a single use stadium, a single club stadium, cost of the development etc etc.

  • para

    Concerning managers, the thing with Arsenal is, that is if we do get a new manager, they have been preparing(at least that is what it looks like) and will have been preparing for 2 full years if AW is to stay til his contract ends, he has never left pre contract, so i do not expect him to start doing so now.

    Even if he does leave(there is a first time for everything) Arsenal has been preparing for at least 1 year, so no abrupt change and flurry of worry beyond hoping that the new man does his job as well as the last one, what ever that new job entails.

    All in all, Arsenal rise, come on, join in, Arsenal rise!

  • Josif

    Owners change managers because it’s easier to replace a manager than not-so-good parts of the team among the players, especially when the registration period has ended.