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Every EPL club going bust except Arsenal. Extra, extra, read all about it.

Well hi diddley dee do!  I have just spent 2.5 years screaming about the insanity of football in the EPL and how it will all end in tears, and what do you know?  It is all ending in tears!  (Apart from those down the pub where it all ends in beers).

There is so much happening second by second I can’t keep up.  Indeed I think I need half a dozen blogs to try and carry all the news.

So instead of our usual deep, insightful, enigmatic, articulate, all-embracing, thought-provoking, inherently overwhelming, original load of old cobblers, here is a quick summary of some of what has happened in the last thirty two and a half seconds.

Arry has been done (again) for tax fraud. He denies is, is stunned that it should come to this, is shocked, amazed, amused and annoyed that the Revenue could even consider he has done anything wrong, and is innocent.  The Tiny Totts are saying that it is nothing to do with them.

The ex-owner of Portsmouth has turned into a gargoyle and Peter Storrie has turned into Peter Storey.   Perhaps Arry could sell an earring like Maradona done.

Which leads to Portsmouth. They are not getting their £17m TV money, but instead it has gone to the clubs they owe money too.  But they still are overdue on money owing so they still can’t buy anyone.  Portsmouth played the game against Coventry without enough subs on the bench because they didn’t have any, and now still can’t.

They are working night and day to find the money.  I could tell them where it is, but they wouldn’t pay me enough so I am staying quiet.

Speaking of clubs not able to sign anyone, AFC Bournemouth (previously Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic) are still unable to sign anyone because of their financial misdemeanors.  Silly boys.

And speaking of money, which we tend to do a lot at the moment, that jolly little team in Manchester (whom we dubbed Manchester IOU about 2 years ago) have revealed in their bond issue that they might sell the Very Old Trafford ground, that they moved into 100 years ago.

The way it moves is this.  The bond raises enough money to pay off the banks.  But that leaves the very pricey PIK loans which the owners are personally liable for.   So they then sell Very Old Trafford, and pay off the PIK loans and lease the ground back.

But as the Independent said today, supposing another Manchester team comes along and says, well we are now the top dogs in Manchester, we’d like that ground please, and we’ll pay more, then the landlord could throw Manchester IOU out of Very Old Trafford, and they could ground share with FC United.

But its worse than that.  Of all times to issue a bond, they have done it just as everyone else seems to be issuing bonds.  There is serious doubt if they will sell it.   What a pity that would be.

But if they do raise the bond money, and if they do sell Very Old Trafford, then the owners have no liabilities, and could sell Manchester IOU for anything leaving the new owner to settle the impossible bond bill.  They would make a profit, and have had the benefit of the £20m plus they have been paying themselves in management fees.

Which takes us down (or up) the road to Liverpool Insolvency – a name we gave them 2.5 years ago, and a name which is now shown to be true.

They have debts, the bank want their money back each year, they can’t buy players until after the next installment is paid, and they only got 33,000 for the last home game.  Like Manchester IOU they are out of the cup.   But they are also out of the Champs League.   And the EPL in terms of a top four place.

And suddenly all their top players are out for weeks or months.   Oh woe, woe and thrice woe.  Torres needs knee surgery.  Gerrard slipped over a punch in a night club and is out for 2 weeks and Benayoun is out with a rib fracture.

It is 20 years since winning the league (although don’t tell the papers that because they don’t like to report it).  The horrible memory of Heysel is on the horizon as Europe (but possibly not Liverpool) remembers the 25th anniversary of Heysel.  And they are bust.

And what is the response of the semi-owners?  They say, “the new stadium will be the turning point”, carefully forgetting that they used all the stadium money to buy the club for themselves.

If you think Arsenal has some doom and gloom sites, you should read the Liverpool sites today.  It is really sad.

Actually if you want a laugh, go on a Liverpool site, and type in

Kalm Down, Kalm Down, Kalm Down.

They might not get it, but it makes me laugh.  (To readers who are not used to English accents, there is a Liverpool accent called Scouse, and a Liverpool phraseology, which includes “calm down” said in such a strange way that I can’t think of how to write it, except with a K.)

Oh and I must not forget the way that directors of the club write to fans.  The son of a semi-owner did a great job on behalf of everyone who thinks that Liverpool FC is made up of some very silly children who ought to know better.   The Guardian ran a funny piece today on what jobs the ex-director might go for now he is no longer a son of Liverpool.

And Blackburn have suddenly realised that in Fat Sam the Slug they have as a manager, well, a slug and want to get rid of him.   Well, they can’t say we didn’t warn them.

And Arsenal?

Well there is the worrying story about changing the club shirt for one match or a season to reflect the 125th anniversary of the birth of the club.  There’s a full article on this on the Woolwich Arsenal blog – www.blog.woolwicharsenal.co.uk

Which reminds me – there is now an extract from the Making the Arsenal book on the site – go to www.woolwicharsenal.co.uk and follow the link.

But on the positive side we have signed 3 players Samuel Galindo of Bolivia. Wellington da Silva of Brazil, and Sol Campbell of Arsenal.   Not bad for January.

So that’s a quick roundup.  Maybe I will find some more odd stories tomorrow.  How about a league table based on the likelihood of each club going bust?  Obviously Portsmouth are top of the league, but who is second?  Liverpool?

Oh what a day.

  • Read all about a club going bust (and it really is quite amusing) in an extract from Making the Arsenal on www.woolwicharsenal.co.uk
  • You can buy Making the Arsenal at amazon.co.uk or here
  • Read what The Online Gooner said about MAKING THE ARSENAL here
  • Read what Arsenal World said about the book here
  • Read what Arsenal Independent Supporters Assn said about Making the Arsenal here
  • Read what A Cultured Left Foot said about Making the Arsenal here

(c) Sir Tony Attwood – knighthood courtesy of readers of this site.  And why shouldn’t blog readers hand out knighthoods?

66 comments to Every EPL club going bust except Arsenal. Extra, extra, read all about it.

  • Debbos

    quite informative..true we r in safe financial waters but for what good cause?? nothing for 4 yrs n u say good winter shopping where 2 of the 3 wont even make into arsenal till the season next and both are again prospects..no more no less!!
    who scores the goals for us?? arshavin?? the guy is wasted being used as a striker..you dont need to be a pundit to figure that out..eduardo??..he is a shadow of the person who was firing us to the title couple of yrs back!! and what if FAB gets injured!! GOD forbid..we will be doomed!! depth of squard is what tilts the odds in your favour..no wonder villa faded last yr!!
    we are strong and have such an enormous amount od talent at our disposal..but then we need experience to guide the heads in times of need..
    you might think that i am one of the cribbing lot who would find more takers in more friendlier forums but i am not…and i like what you write apart from the fact that you fail to highlight our short falls which every one else knows!!

  • walter

    Great round up of todays news, Sir.
    Our big and safe ships steady rides the waves and as it nears the harbour we see the wrecks of other Titanics slowly sinking to the bottom of the financial ocean. They all were thinking to be smarter but at the end they will pay the penalty for sailing dangerous in the rough sea.
    And at the quay the fans blessed with patience and foresight will cheer as The Arsenal sails in first.

  • Cujo

    Please oh please do the league table thing!! LOL.. sheer pleasure reading your blog tony. oh and thanks for clearing up my confusion about what a ”scouser” is. Us South Africans always wonder about such things. Strange little place that UK is LOL.

  • BOOZY

    I must say tony – that i never took your MANCHESTER IOU expression serious until now. but i hope they get over it and get back in profitability- cuz what would the premiership be like without an ARSENAL VS MANCHESTER IOU clash.

  • Rafael

    Great article Tony! I actually read about the chance that Manchester might have to sell Old Trafford in another blog, but thought it to be nothing but gossip until i read it on Untold Arsenal. Could you provide links to some of those Liverpool sights you have been reading? I imagine it would be quite an interesting read.

  • EAC3

    Its easy at present for us to to have a laugh at Man U, Portsmouth Liverpool and all those other clubs with well publicised “money” troubles…BUT what happens when Stan Kroenke finally goes over the 30%…how is he going to pay ?…cash on delivery..I dont think so somehow. We could be facing the same debt problems as others perhaps ..now that the problems with the property sales have mainly been solved the financial profle for AFC is much healthier but only whilst the Shareholding remains “in limbo” Up the Arse!

  • biggy

    Maybe we should be grateful Arsene did not make those expensive signings we have all been urging him to make. Enjoying the dilema of the other big boys is like winning a title in itself even before the end of the season. I have a friend who supports Manure [poor soul] and whenever I mentioned the possible consequence of their debt mountain, he always insisted it was never going to happen. But today, even though he keeps the same line his voice betrays his worry and doubbt.

  • simms21

    @EAC3 even though Stan does have his own money if he really need it he’ll just ask his wife who is one of the Walton children and heir to the Walmart throne for money. And last I heard each of those kids own almost 20% stake in the company.

  • FunGunner

    Well, well, well, Tony. *rubs hands gleefully*

    EAC3
    If Kroenke or Usmanov get to 30%, they have to OFFER to buy the other shares. It does not mean that the other shareholders have to sell.

  • ghosty

    The thought of city playing at old trafford and the scousers in meltdown has put a nice warm glow in my cheeks on a cold january night,but perhaps we should do the charitable thing and help out those in the footballing third world?….NAHH!

  • Punit

    Great read!

  • soulrebel

    As always, a pleasure. And loving Walters ocean analogy. Steer thy steady Arse. Now all we need is Stamford Bridge to spontaneously combust.

  • arsenal tone

    great work again tony. it wasnt until i started reading UNTOLD arsenal a couple of years ago that i realised the perilous(?) position of some (most)of the big clubs.
    youve kept me amused and educated these last couple of years tony thank you. kudos too for Walter. i always enjoy reading your perspective on ArsenalLand
    OFF TOPIC great piece about our Lord Wegner by Celine Dion (no, not THAT one…)

    http://www.thefootballnetwork.net/main/s378/st153160.htm

  • Wonderman

    @EAC3 Whilst I understand your concern, Kroenke is worth £3.5billion at recent estimates and is married to one of the heirs of the Wal-Mart empire in the states.The difference about Arsenal is that they have not paid dividends for years and years so assuming that continues the only other way an investor can ‘realise’ his investment is to create added value associatedwith his asset therefore raising it’s market value and his share price then selling. Personally I can see the uk bringing legislation in to stop investors burdening their asset with the cost of purchase, but I dont think Kroenke operates like that anyway

  • Peter

    I guess most of us could see what was going to happen eventually. How can these clubs keep spending more than they earn? The wealthy owners are not going to throw money away and risk not getting it back. I don’t want any of them to go bust. I just want a law to be introduced to force all clubs to only spend what they have from their income (plus a little extra maybe). Arsenal lives within its means and other clubs who once laughed at us will now begin to envy us as we continue to sail the stormy seas. It would be a disaster if clubs such as those mentioned go bust – I’m sure none of us want that really. We just need them to be brought down to earth (and maybe spend a couple of seasons in the Championship as a penalty!).

  • tim

    Can The Board make rules that limit leveraged-buyouts? My sense is that they can, if things like the 30% rule exists. I hope Mr. Hill-Wood is paying attention to what’s going on. Wonderman, you make a good argument about why Kroenke would be unlikely to pull a Glazer on Arsenal, but we never know, so why not put another rule on the books?

    Also, is Dirty ‘Arry really, really corrupt or really, really stupid? I’m beginning to be (slightly) more sympathetic with the idiot. Maybe his genes are to blame! 🙂

  • Benhan

    Tony, looks like untold arsenal now isn’t limited on untold stories about arsenal. You also did great predictions about other clubs and repeatedly wrote untold stories that never been picked by mainstream medias & blogs til now. I’m scared to know you have that power sir, really scared, everything u wrote just came true. First the match scores then old arry case and now Man IOU n liverfool imminent collapses. Lol please don’t spoil the news that we are going to have a treble this season, it won’t be fun anymore 🙂

  • Abhishek

    Just when we are waiting to receive our ship on the shores, I am sure now many fans waiting for Man U or Liverpool ships would switch sides and wait for the Arsenal one. And those D&G brigades will surely say that they trust Arsene for whatever he does.

    Just to top up on all these news, our club has been rated as the club of the month across the globe by Goal.com. Though not a very big gesture but surely all those pundits are obviously taking us seriously now.

  • I certainly don’t wanna see the league table you’re gonna prepare. Who would like to see his club in the relegation zone?

  • MOMONEY

    So I just ordered from Amazon today and I tried to buy your book but it wasnt available on amazon USA. There was one used copy for $45 i think. Any word on when it will be available again? I have heard good things

  • Debbos: you asked “who scores the goals for us?”

    I suppose the answer is everyone. We are, after all, the top scorers in the league.

  • And on a different topic, in case you missed it, there is an interesting little debate going on, on http://www.blog.woolwicharsenal.co.uk about the idea of bringing in another special club shirt to celebrate 125 years of Arsenal.

    The question is not only, should the club abandon the white sleeves again, but also, have they got their colours right.

    And indeed, did they have the right colour for the last year at Highbury. Evidence is rising that they might not.

  • AGS

    I also think that Villa are not as white as they are made out to be either. The only notable sale I can remember them making since O’Neil took over is the £12m they got for Garath Barry. Yet, their American owner has given them in the region of £100m+ to spend. (minus the wage costs for all the players brought in). This is another club that also didn’t have a pot to piss in 3/4 years ago, so where has this money come from? (thats a rhetorical question, the money has come straight out the pocket of Randy Learner of course). But again, is this money just a loan to the club meaning they are £100+million in debt or have they signed a lucrative shirt sponsorship deal that we don’t know about??!. The press hail Villa’s quiet American owner as a shining example to the glazers and hicks et all, of how running a football club should be, yet to me Villa seem no different to any of them – Chelski, ManUSA etc in living way beyond their own means.
    As to silent Stans possible takeover, I am actually less worried now than I was a few weeks back, now that all this with ManUSA has come into the open. I don’t think there is any way fans etc would allow a takeover of their club in the same way now the truth of these types of takeovers is out, plus I believe that if Stan does mount a bid then he will fund it with his own money i.e the $400 he is likely to get from selling his stake in the St. louis Rams. Even then I reckon he would not buy the club outright but only to 50% + so he is the controlling shareholder. (I reckon that he wouldn’t be able to buy outright anyway due to the owners of the other large chunks of shares)

  • Kevin

    Tim – the only way to prevent leveraged buy-outs would be for laws to be changed. To me there’s something quite obscene about the idea that you borrow money to buy a business then transfer the debt to that business, in cases of Man U & Liverpool turning profitable businesses into loss-makers. I can’t see a UK Government doing this though I suppose the EC might do something – then just watch for the UK to demand an opt-out!

    The best idea would be for the laws of football to disallow it, or rather, disallow clubs with this kind of debt from participating in relevant competitions (existing debts excluded). If football authorities legislate to say that in future the only permissible debts will be those used to buy/renew property then the vultures would never come near football in the first place. Let’s face it, would Rafa Benitez be in such trouble if the tens of millions Liverpool are paying in interest every year was available to spend on players? Fergie is protected at Man U but when he retires his successor will face the same problems that Benitez has.

  • neutral fan

    debbos u r spot on with : “you fail to highlight our short falls which every one else knows”!!, and tony gives one reason for that: he supports arsene in everything he does….lol,clubs will go bust and asenal will prosper in what sense?? Man IOU which he says is in enormous amount of debt has won more titles than anyone else, on the other hand arsenal has never ever won modern era pl title consecutively, keep on chanting liverpool hasn’t won title for 20 years, as if arsenal has won 20 titles in a row…lol, arsenal themselves has won title for 3 times, with a high point of invincibles, and surely he will point out that…..quite frankly he and arsenal fans like him, wait for other clubs to fail rather waitin for their clubs to succeed, b’coz they can’t win anything until likes of man iou, chelsea, liv, go bust, they are waiting for banks to eliminate their competition rather than eliminating them by themselves,
    i like this blog for his occasional brilliance, but most of the time he puts other club down to show how gr8 arsenal are, financially, youth system, 60,000 stadium, transfer policy, blah blah blah blah blah blah…

    Wenger shud hav bought loric cana for 2 mil, lucas neil free, sol campbell is a good buy(free)….but no and fans like u agree with wenger saying quality is not upto the mark acc to wenger….lol lol lol…..lucas neil is a proven pl defender and better than silvester, cana wud have provided the physical presence in the mf, but this blog rates denilson higher than cana….lol lol lol lol…..their arguement: he is a good reader of the game…my arguement: then he shud take the place of pat rice,….

    no doubt arsenal are better than liv and others but they are leagues behind chelsea and man utd in terms of achievements in last one decade, i, sadly, really sadly term such team as IMPOTENT- this side can fcuk teams brilliantly but occasionally, but they fail to deliver titles…

  • tim

    An interesting article on the psychology of Stan Kroenke, from the NY Times:

    http://dealbook.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/15/from-an-owner-to-the-quietest-sports-emperor/

    @Kevin — Thanks for the comments. All I know is that unless a law is put in place, there will always be vultures swarming around because there’s so much money in big-time football. There needs to be structural changes.

  • mingus

    re: NeutralFan: “quite frankly he and arsenal fans like him, wait for other clubs to fail rather waitin for their clubs to succeed, b’coz they can’t win anything until likes of man iou, chelsea, liv, go bust, they are waiting for banks to eliminate their competition rather than eliminating them by themselves”

    Before the financial doping of Chelsea and Man City appeared we were doing rather well, punching above our weight, winning things. Then the landscape changed plus we moved into our new stadium which meant we had to adjust in our own way, in order to win things again. And so now we find ourselves in a position where we are (and will continue to be), in a strong position to compete and win things, against this backdrop of financial doping, regardless of these teams going bust, and “eliminating themselves”! Wenger has put us in a position where we are no longer punching above our weight. We are one of the big hitters, and trophies will follow, irrespective of whether other teams f**k up or not.

  • Syke gooner

    Very hilarious n great article tony. Dis sure isn’t le groove. These r mature jokes but ironically true jokes. Wenger has proven why he is a professor n a manager also whereas d oda clubs? ………… They don’t have Wenger so i can’t blame them 4their downfalls, cos only Wenger is wise enough 2manage a club effectively. We’ll have d last laugh. Can’t wait. Thanks 2Wenger.

  • SharkeySure

    Brilliant read again Tony. Many thanks.

  • LRV

    “Poor” Old Harry! “The evil that men do, lives after them”. My mother used to say, “If you court the devil, it will come back to hunt you.” I hope he finds his way out of this one.

    All that can happen is happening right now; isn’t it? Well, I am sure that there is more to come.

    So Tony, you have been able to confirm the Galido signing then. Fantastic if true. I thought it was just another rumour. I tried every which way to confirm without success.

    “Sir” Illogical neutral fan. I wonder why you tag yourself “neutral fan”. Tells more about your fickle nature I suspect. Would it not have been better if you had supported any of those “top” clubs that you mentioned in your comments (10:04 am) there, instead of bothering with Arsenal? It clearly appears to me that you have so very low opinions of Arsenal since every single one of Arsenal’s honour and glory in the last 13 years is of very little consequence to you. Remind me once more if you can; – How many more times has your dear Chavski-KGB@Fulham won the Premier League since inception, inspite of all the £££Millions they have spent, than Arsenal? Be precise please!

  • Cujo

    @neutral fan

    picture this.. In athletics, all the athletes were using performance enhancing drugs except one individual, and that individual finished 4th. Then things happend so that those other athletes couldnt use those drugs anymore, then the athlete who had been competing honestly would most probably finish first. That is the case with arsenal. We have to wait for other teams to compete fairly until we can win, because we refuse to be dishonest and cheat. Sport afterall is about integrity too.

  • Wonderman

    @neutral fan whilst I respect your opinion when I read statements like ‘Wenger shud hav bought loric cana for 2 mil, lucas neil free’ I wonder how many Arsenal games you have been to over the years to make you think that.. the blueprint for the modern day arsenal fullback is speed, aggression, ability to play as a wingback, and a good passser of the ball. Lucas Neil probably ticks the aggression box, but in my opinion would be found wanting in the other categories in our current arsenal team. Re:Cana I think you have a valid argument, however, we must remember the signing of a player is not merely about arsenal turning up making an offer and the player signing.Often there are children in schools at critical ages , pregnancies of spouse ( ala David Villa last summer) or simply the player does’nt think he will get enough playing time. Also remember Arsenal work within a strict budget and some players’ financial demands may put undue risk on the budget. Finally many fans seem to think that managing a fooball team is like playing Championship Manager. Most Managers select their teams based on what has been seen in training during that week and the percieved requirements to beat the opposition along with various fitness information, the problems come when players do not transfer training performances to the real games. This can happen for a variety of reasons which us fans are never privvy to. Also many fans fail to realise that a player who has returned to fitness ( as in availablity to be selected in a match squad)is not matchfit. Matchfitness often takes 6-8 continual games

  • Sean

    Never forget that Arsenal are a major player in the overall ethos of the Premiership.

    I can’t see AFC voting to go back to a genuine ‘Champions’ League where only the winners of the Premiership compete, can you?

    I can’t see AFC re-negotiating the Sky deal so that more money filters down the pyramid, can you?

    I can’t see AFC allowing the supporters of Cardiff and Southampton to enjoy the skills of Ramsey and Wallcott for more than 20 or so occasions before enticing them away (see Laurie Cunningham at Orient), can you?

    I can’t see AFC re-negotiating gate receipts so that clubs like Norwich, Palace, QPR and Luton Town can compete on a more level playing field thus challenging the Bore Four of the last decade, can you?

    AFC are less a ‘part of the problem’ than Liverpool, Man. U., Chelsea, Redknapp etc. etc. but, rest assured, they ARE part of the problem.

  • Arsesession

    Sir Tony,
    Will Harry be able to manage from prison?

  • Arsesession

    If so, who will be his runner?

  • notlager

    oh Sean,

    what happend to your life that you’re so bitter?
    I don’t think you’re happy supporting Barnet, are you?

  • tim

    @Sean — you make a good point. Arsenal are a big club, with huge influence, and are by no means perfect. I don’t think anyone here would dispute that.

    But that DOES NOT mean that Arsenal fans should not be proud of Arsenal and its ethos under Wenger.

    The EPL–not to mention world football in general–is a competition, and Arsenal act, as they should, in their own pragmatic self-interest, which is to win. That’s the reality. The world is unfair.

    In an imperfect world (or in the EPL case, an utterly corrupt world), Wenger’s Arsenal strives for beautiful, winning football and financial prudence. Arsenal’s actions, however self-interested, are always done with integrity, fairness, and responsibility. It makes me proud to be a supporter.

  • For what it is worth, I don’t think Arsenal is perfect at all, and they do things that frustrate and annoy me, from the large to the small.

    In fact just at this moment I am trying to highlight one of them on http://www.blog.woolwicharsenal.co.uk in terms of the idea of a change of shirt for the 125th year celebrations.

    I’ve also recently added my voice to the complaints about the sudden dropping of the reserve matches from the TV coverage.

    But, by and large there are hundreds of blogs and many newspapers that do this complaining for us. The aim of this site is to seek out the positives and put those forward.

    I have always made it clear that while I won’t censor people unless they say something highly offensive or illegal I am not trying to give a balanced view. I am offering a counter balance to view of so many other places that criticise Arsenal all day long.

    And all night long too.

    Tony

  • Paul C.

    As far as Lorik Cana is concerned, I have seen him play six times now since he arrived in the UK (I only saw him on youtube before that) and my impression so far is that he is nowhere near a good enough passer of the ball to make it in Arsenal’s system. Rugged without a doubt, but technically very average. I dont think it is any surprise that, despite his very cheap price, none of the “big” clubs in Europe had ANY interest in Cana.

  • Cujo

    Trophy drought ends 2010!!!

  • LRV

    According to Forbes’ top sport clubs for April 2009, Arsenal is worth $1.2b: – http://www.forbes.com/2010/01/12/manchester-united-yankees-cowboys-business-sports-valuable-teams.html

  • Diceman1984

    neutrual fan said we re leagues behind chelski and man IOU in terms of titles in the last decade….

    manchester iou aside, we’ve managed to win 2 league and 3 fa cup titles while reaching the CL final….but yeah we re way behind chelski cause they won……2 league and 2 fa cup titles while attacking the transfer market like mad and angry richmen….

    There’s a reason why Cana is playing for Sunderland, and Lucas fucking Neil??

    And we re the mad ones….

    And I can also defend Tony that he writes the truth, and if you don’t want the writers to put down the other teams then you should go read their blogs because this is an Arsenal blog for crying out loud.

  • Sean

    Not bitter notlager (get it?!), simply aware that fifty years ago football was inclusive, the players were respected and you really didn’t have a clue who would win the league or cup season on season.

    It’s you who’ve got the raw end of the deal, my friend, on your plastic seat.
    Who knows, one day you might realise it.
    If it’s on, come to Barnet tomorrow and see football where you feel you’re in a football ground and not in an opera house.

    If I want opera I go to Covent Garden!

  • Paul C.

    I think it is fantastic when fans of other clubs start saying things along the lines of “what have Arsenal won?”. Manchester United fans can rightly crow about their record, and so can older Liverpool fans, but after that we Arsenal fans dont have to take a back seat to anyone. Since 1930, Championships won by English clubs are as follows:

    Man Utd 15
    Liverpool 14
    Arsenal 13

    The next on the list is Everton with 6.

    But hey, Arsenal are such an unsuccessful club.

    Heck, Chelsea have been in their own League, financially at least, for the past five years (no longer with City now having arrived) and even in a League of their own, they could only win two out of five Championships. How hilarious is that? But of course Chelsea fans will talk about the huge success their team has had in that time!!! Compared to who? No one else was competing with them!!! It’s comparable to a situation where only one athlete was taking steroids in a 100m race and HE STILL DIDNT WIN!!!!

    And of course opposing fans will say “but what happened recently is what matters!!!!” Yeah right. In 1995 Blackburn fans could say “we are the best”, in 1992 Leeds fans could say “we are the best”. In 1982 Aston Villa were the dogs bollocks in Europe. Short term success comes and goes. The test is in the longevity. Arsenal will still be around challenging for trophies in twenty years. How many other clubs can realistically say that (especially if sugar daddies decide to move to LA with their girlfriend who has just had a baby and hates the UK)???

  • diceman1984

    Well said Paul C., well said

  • neutral fan

    @LRV
    no i don’t want to support any team on this blog and i like arsenal way of managing club, but wenger time and again contradicts with himself, arsenal cud have been in title race last year if flamini hadn’t gone+ lucas neil for free is way better than silvester for 7k or that pounds…..but wenger don’t see that and that is frustrating…..+ i stand by my point this blog mainly focuses on financial shortcomings of other clubs rather than their own,utd haven’t spend that much on market have they?? their debt is to be blamed on their owners…..

    winning trophies will help not only spread ur fanbase but also financially, but wenger is not ready to take that risk,,i tell u what their will b more clubs like city and chelsea in future splashing money around to win titles and fans like u will blame financial doping for not winning titles….lol…

    Arsenal are impotent but still they are way better than chelsea but not utd…NOT MANCHESTER UNITED……i m not united fan..i hate them for those extra tym given to them their arrogance….

    tell me one thing wud lucas neil be not better than sol campbell and silvestre combined?

    sol is a gud defender but he’s aged now…

  • neutral fan

    @ diceyman……carling cup also counts as a cup and league position matters, and i meant last decade not 90’s, arsenal has never finished above chelsea after so called financial doping….

  • neutral fan

    @paul c,

    in next 20 years some billionaires will buy some new clubs and pump in money, like they did with chelsea, again instead of competing with them right here right now, u guys are pinning hopes on future, that banks will destroy them blah blah blah,

    again same old excuse we don’t have the money…

    fact is arsenal is not ready to take risk, it’s not that arsenal need to spend 100 mill but 20-30 mill and a pl title then money is worth it…..

  • diceman1984

    Some people still have no clue whatsoever……

  • walter

    Let’s suppose that there would be 19 sjeiks on their way to England and all as welthy as the ocean is deep. And they all would buy a PL club and give them billons of money to spend.
    You know at the end of that season there still will be 3 clubs that will go down. And only one that will be champion.
    But when Uefa comes with the rules that clubs should run with profit or within their means… we would be the only one that would be allowed to play the CL of those 20 clubs.
    AW and Arsenal is just preparing for the days that those rules will be applied and I think, and hope, that those rules will be applied in the future.

  • Paul C.

    Neutral Fan – Sorry, you dont seem to understand economics and the financial aspects of football. If 20 billionnaires took over all the clubs in England then all it would do is drive up prices for everyone and each of the billionnaires would lose all their money. No more billionnaires to worry about. Roman has lost 700million already and he hasnt had another billionnaire to compete with. Now that he does have competition (Man City) he has shut down his spending since he can no longer afford to lose money like that. The sheiks in Manchester will eventually get to that point as well. If another couple of billionnaires come into the game then they will get to that point quicker.

    Billionnaires will not blow all their money on football clubs. There are only a few billionnaires stupid enough, and rich enough, to do what Roman and the Sheiks are doing, or have done.

    But as an Arsenal fan, I desperately want MORE billionnaires in the game, just not at Arsenal. Because as each new billionnaire comes into the English game it negates the importance of the billionnaires already there. And billionnaires tend to be impatient and foolish when it comes to trying to get what they want, and they make impatient and foolish decisions (like firing Jose Mourinho and buying Shevchenko for 30m) and so it simply makes Arsenal’s policies look even smarter.

    And this idea that “20-30million and a Premier League title is worth it” is one used by so many idiots now it is ridiculous. So, lets go with your logic. Was 30million for Robinho money well spent? No. Was 30million for Berbatov or Shevchenko money well spent? Was 20million for Filipe Melo money well spent? No, no and a HUGE no!!! SPENDING MONEY DOESNT GUARANTEE ANYTHING!!! When will people understand that simple truth? Getting the right players is what is important. Such as AW getting Thomas Vermaelen this summer. The right players do not come around all the time. You have to wait for them. So spending 30million is absolutely zero guarantee that a PL title will follow, and if it doesnt then you have just spent all your money and you are broke the next summer. Smart decision.

    The decision is not “do we spend 30million for trophies now or not?” That is a simple question with a simple answer if it were that easy. Yes, of course you spend the money. But the question is not that simple. The decision is rather “do we risk our entire future as a football club for immediate success?” That is the correct question to ask. And the obvious answer to that is NO. A resounding NO. Trophies mean nothing if you are bankrupt. Are Valencia fans happy right now that their club is close to bankruptcy despite the fact their debts led to a couple of trophies? Probably not.

  • Diceman1984

    I just thought about how manu won the 3 titles…1 answer=Ronaldo…..how much did he cost manu? He was pretty much unknown back then…just like almost all Arsenal players who became legends under Wenger.

    Unlike the Spanish giants, Arsenal doesn’t need to spend 50 mil plus for world class players.

  • neutral fan

    ok forget financial condn, every1 knows arsenal are head and shoulder above other, i am frustrated wenger didn’t looke at the options of lucas neil and cana….that’s it….nothing more……

  • neutral fan

    sorry to say, defence is gonna let down arsenal this season, or they have to be extremely lucky with tv5 and gallas….scoring goals is nt a problem…

  • neutral fan

    @paul c…..i am not saying buy mindlessly, but if u can win title by spending 20-30 millions won’t it be worth?and if u don’t it will be known as transfer disaster, that’s it….u don’t need striker but a defender who can play is a must…..+players going down like straws in storm is ridiculous..no amount of buying will compensate for injuries….

  • Paul C.

    Neutral Fan – you still dont get it. You say that if a 20-30million player doesnt succeed it will “be known as transfer disaster, that’s it”. Wrong.

    Let’s take an example. I will keep it nice and easy for you. Edin Dzeko of Wolfsburg is a 20-30million player. He also wants 100k a week wages after tax. So with the UK’s new 50% upper tax bracket that is 200k a week wages, which is 10million a year. So if we buy Edin Dzeko for 25million we effectively pay 35million for him this year, taking away ALL of our profits for the year. Because of his 10million a year salary we also make 10million a year LESS in profit every year he is at the club, so next year we only have 25million in profit to spend, not 35million. But of course Cesc, TV, RvP, Arshavin all want 200k a week wages as well now or else they will leave the club, so increasing each of their salaries takes another 15million a year off the yearly profit, so now we have 10million a year in profit to spend on transfers. But Theo, Nasri, Song, Diaby, Clichy all want salary hikes at least to the level that Cesc, TV, RvP, and Arshavin were previously on, so that is another 10million in salaries used up and now we no longer have any profit and break even for the year.

    So, if Edin Dzeko is a huge success then best case scenario is that we have no more money for five years to spend. The worst case scenario is not simply that he is a transfer mistake, the worst case scenario is that he destroys our entire club wage and financial structure and dooms the club for a generation.

    That is what people who say “we just want the club to pay 20-30 million for a player” forget about. The wages for a player that costs 20-30million are top bracket wages. The type of wages that Madrid, Barca, Milan can afford to pay (Chelsea and City pay those wages only because their sugar-daddies pay the money) and no one else. When one person at a club gets those wages, everyone else does. Look at Chelsea and the way their club wage bill continues to go up as perfect evidence of that fact.

    It is not just about the transfer fee. That is the simplistic view that the media have created and many fans have fallen for, inluding it seems, you. Wages are a far more important factor in the finances of a football club. The transfer fees are nothing. As with any business, players within a club want to know they are being paid what they are worth. Cesc wants to know he is being paid the most at the club, followed by Gallas, RvP, Arshavin and TV etc, etc. Any new player MUST fit in within that salary structure or else the ENTIRE salary structure must be changed. How would you feel if someone where you worked was hired BELOW you and paid double your wages?????? So anytime a new player is bought the effect that the player will have on the wage structure must be looked at.

  • neutral fan

    @ paul c. ………….grrrrrrrr………i am sorry to not make my self clear……..lucas neil + loric cana are u gonna break bank for them no no nopes……2 mill + around 40k salary each………and u have a playable cover for central defender, holding midfielder…….allowing more rotation…..decreasing probabilities of injuries…..allowing more chance to win title…..arshavin was also around 17 million did he asked for 100k????…well that’s not my point…i wanted to say wenger has 20 mill at his disposal…and i also said u don’t need any strikers..and no defender comes that expensive…..u just cauht one point of my comment and went on and on to explain ur side…i know that already my main point is 2mill + around 80k salary and u have players better than sol capbell and silvestr…..ur paying same amount to silvestr isn’t it???and for what …experience….next tym u post any reply think twice on it what u just read….and don’t comment the same thing again and again, ignoring my main point….

  • neutral fan

    @ diceman …do u really think????…lol

  • Michael Fitton

    @neutral fan. I have a request for you. You’re going to think I’m a snob but please trying reading back your posts before hitting submit and then editing them into something your grandparents would understand. I’m sorry but you write as if you’re having a conversation with a mate in a pub and not as if you’re trying to explain what you think to a wider audience. I can cope with the interesting take on spelling – that’s fine – but ignoring the basic rules of grammar means that a lot of us older readers have no idea what you’re trying to say. I’ve got a feeling that you’ve got some good points to make but I can’t understand you. Thank you from an old f@rt.

  • neutral fan

    @ michael..sorry..i was in a hurry…..first tym it didn’t get published…hope u get the point…..plz don’t reply if u don’t have any valid arguments…iam not here to teach u english….plz check the content not the spellings….thank u in advance….if u still can’t understand what iam saying plz don’t try either……tony’s articles are way better than my stupid irrelevant comments..so plz have a drink and spare me…

  • neutral fan

    and neither to learn english…thank u… an young f@rt

  • neutral fan

    sorry if i offended u….or any arsenal fan…

  • Paul C.

    Neutral Fan –
    What is this stuff about not reading your posts? Here is your post that I responded to: “i am not saying buy mindlessly, but if u can win title by spending 20-30 millions won’t it be worth?and if u don’t it will be known as transfer disaster, that’s it”. Uh, that is pretty clear isnt it? That is what I was responding to. If you dont want people to respond to things, then dont write them. On blogs it is hard to tell what things people consider important or not since tone cannot be ascertained so if you dont feel something is important it is best just not to mention it.

    And yes, Arshavin only got 80k a week, but Dzeko has already stated he wants 100k a week after tax. And my point was about Dzeko, and about players in the 20-30million price range, which Arshavin was not.

    Your “point” in your most recent post seems to be that you think Cana and Neill are better players than what we have already. I completely and utterly disagree and obviously so does the manager, who is really the only person that matters in all this. Nobody except Sunderland had any interest in Cana last summer, so nobody else thought he was any good. At Sunderland he has proven himself to be a rugged yet technically limited player of average talent. Hardly someone that is going to make any kind of impression at one of the big clubs in Europe. Or have you seen anything different from his performances? Lucas Neill went to Everton on a free transfer, so nobody was interested in him in September, and has just gone to Turkey on a free transfer so there is still nobody interested in him. He has always been very, very limited as a player. But you are of the opinion that they are better than Craig Eastmond, Denilson, Sol Campbell, Silvestre etc. Silvestre may have a lot of weaknesses at his advanced age, but he also has experience of winning championships and Alex Ferguson thought he was good enough for many, many years, something he never thought about Lucas Neill. But that is your opinion and that is fine, but like I said, very few people would agree with you, and that has been proved by the complete lack of interest in both players when they were available.

    There is a massive difference between playing at mid-table level and playing at a top-4 level. Look at Shawcross of Stoke. He was released without a second thought from Utd and now people are bigging him up as an England player. He is still the same limited player he was at Utd. But he looks like a star at Stoke surrounded by other limited players.

  • neutral fan

    it’s a waste of time arguing with an arsenal fan……i never said he was gud enuf for 1st team but at least decent enuff back up……nobody was interested in henry when wenger bought him….and nobody was interested in fab when he came to arsenal…….forget it….no need to comment….keep waiting until chelsea and man utd run out of money and then and that’s also not sure, u will claim ur title back…lol…..1 request though, next tym u lose to man utd or chelsea or sunderland or man city, u shud be brave enuff to blame ur team and manager rather than blaming wembley’s grass, refree’s indecision, players injuries and so on…may be stadium light…..who knows….and oh yes, keep chanting the mantra of financial doping…i am also watching for how long wenger holds on to players without trophies and with a fraction of salary what is paid at spanish giant and london giants……

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  • The author knows nothing about football at all and just shows how biased he is. will never visit this site again. What a tool