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January 2021

Fifa survives, Infantino wins. Arsenal make a loss.

By Tony Attwood

Gianni Infantino has moved from being the General Secretary of Uefa, a position he has held since October 2009, to being President of the most corrupt sports organisation that the world has ever seen: Fifa.

He was associated with Financial Fair Play, and has seen the expansion of Euro 2016 to 24 teams and the notion of Euro 2020 as a competition played in 13 countries.  He is a member of Fifa’s Reform Committee.  He was also appointed Director of Uefa’s Legal Affairs and Club Licensing Division in January 2004.

He is known for working on closer contacts with the European Union, and the Council of Europe.

He has also supported the Fifa and Uefa notion that these bodies are bigger than and more important than nation states.  During the attempts by the Greek government to clean up Greek football he supported the Hellenic Football Federation and warned Greece that it would be suspended from international football for government interference.

In his build up to the election he stated that he wanted to expand the World Cup to 40 teams which is an unmitigated disaster for the clubs who will have their players damaged as a result of overplaying.

He spent £400,000 of Uefa money on his personal campaign to be President of Fifa.   Will change be forthcoming?  Don’t put your house on it.

Also announced this afternoon….

Arsenal have announced a loss of £3.4m for the six months to November 30 2015, compared with a profit of over £6m in the same period in the previous year.  Improved player contracts, transfer of Cech and no major sales of players.  £159m in the bank, but a lot of outgoing money on stage payments will use up some of that, plus the continuing final payments on the stadium.

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51 comments to Fifa survives, Infantino wins. Arsenal make a loss.

  • proudkev

    Did anyone really expect FIFA to change?

    There is too much personal wealth at atsake here. The only way to shake up FIFA is to change the ridiculous voting structure that gives virtual non-football nations the same voice as us.

    The fact these guys even get to use FIFA money to campaign is beyond crazy.

    Sorry but FIFA will remain the corrupt organisation. If the mass fixing of recent world cups and the situation with regard to Qatar wasnt enough to bury FIFA nothing will. So expect much of the same.

    Oh, and don’t expect the English FA to do anything, they missed the boat.

  • Andy Mack

    I’m not sure if he was the best option/candidate but he certainly wasn’t the worst.
    We wait to see if he’s a self-serving arse or not…

  • GoingGoingGooner

    Candidates carefully vetted by the establishment…I wonder if Donald Trump considered running.

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Nah – He’s too honest!

  • Mick

    Re the club accounts, any mention therein of the £200 million Mr Wenger supposedly has available for world class strikers but is refusing to spend?

  • Andy Mack

    Mick, it says the cash reserves (EXCLUDING the money we’re required to hold for the ‘mortgage’ deal) is reduced from about 139 to about 135m.
    So with a salary at 200k per week = 10.4m annual = 52m for 5 years contract means we can spend 80m on one player if one good enough becomes available…

  • Mick

    Andy Mack
    Your sums are about right I would say but it will cut no ice with the obsessive ‘£200 million to spend’ brigade.

  • @Swales1968

    Is there any truth in the report that the fat Russian has brought more shares which take him to the 30% mark

  • nicky

    One of the most shameful aspects is the way those already in football governance, use their association’s money to further their personal ambition to become FIFA President.
    I daresay Infantino wasn’t the only candidate to employ this highly dubious use of funds.
    And while ALL footballing nations, rich and poor, large an small, maintain equal voting rights, the prospects of change for the better do not appear bright. Even the United Nations have the sense not to follow this quite unmanageable procedure.
    Not a good day for the would-be reformers of the beautiful game.

  • Tom

    So it’s true then, Tottenham chairman was elected FIFA ‘s next president.

    That sneaky bastard!

  • porter

    He has bought out Moshiri from Red and white ,according to the daily Mail zbek-born Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov has increased his influence at Arsenal after purchasing 18,695 shares, equating to 30.04 per cent of the north London club.

  • ob1977

    Arsene says he knows Infantino and that was the best bet and is a good man, and knowing Arsene’s feelings on corruption I think he is as good as we can hope for for now…

  • John

    @swales 1968
    Lets hope the fat russian with his extra shares can put some pressure on stan kronke to invest money in to his club and not take out.I know as a fan which i would rather have..

  • Jerry


    Arsene Wenger’s quote in regards to Infantino according to the Standard was: “Honestly, I feel UEFA has presented a good candidate in Infantino, who I know. I do not know the other candidates, nor do I know any programme of anybody because that has been very vague.”

    It wasn’t a real endorsement over the other candidates, just that he knows him and he’s a good candidate, but also does not know the other ones well.

    As Andy said above, not sure if he was the best option, but certainly not the worst.

    I personally think it’s a bad option since Infantino considering he’s pals with Platini and Blatter, and only ran because Platini was ineligible (even stating he would withdraw if Platini was able to run).

    It’s just a pathetic continuation of the Blatter status quo, but a new face!

  • Jerry

    Further proof of the continuing status quo:

    Sepp Blatter said Infantino “has all the qualities to continue my work and to stabilize FIFA again.”

    Unofficially Blatter was probably saying: let the good times roll!

  • Mandy Dodd

    Infantino…..perhaps better than the Sheikh…..but that is not saying a lot.
    A reputation as Platinis gimp…..sorry, right hand man, I would also suspect he is heavily backed by, and therefore will owe some top clubs, and agents, maybe even a Portuguese agent.
    From what I have read, he was for whatever reason extremely reluctant to take on some pretty convincing match fixing claims in Greece and Turkey….and as we can assume, match fixing does not stop there.

    Give him his chance and we shall wait and see, but I would be aware of the wise words of Pete Townsend “Meet the new boss…..same as the old boss”
    Just hope we haven’t been fooled again.

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    That Fifa’s Presidential election staged today was a shamble election. And surprisingly condoned by Issa Hayatou of all people. What a shame!

    That so called Fifa Presitential election held today was not conducted on a level playing ground as it should be for a credible candidate to emerged as the winner.

    But d election was kangaroed to allow Gianni Infactino emerge elected. I never knew Uefa and their allies will go this far to impose another European administrator at Fifa soon after another one was forced out on corruption related charges. This is AMASSING!

    In fairness to football management across the World and in d sprit of gv and take, The only creditable candidate amongst the 4 who stood for today’s election is Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein who should hv been elected President of Fifa and not Gianni Infantino if at all World football Governace is to move forward from where it was under Seep Blatter & Michel Platini regime. Infantino is a stoge placed now at Fifa to cover d evil track of his predecessors.

  • omgarsenal

    The real tragedy in all this pantomime is as follows;

    1)No external candidate can run for the presidency, only the insiders (accolytes) Blatter’s bumboys. That means ulitmately, control remains in the hands of the hidden.

    2)FIFA is so corrupt and the FBI, Interpol, and the Swiss authorities so determined to bring this entire house of cards down, that we are heading into the perfect storm.

    3)209 national associations are totally unwilling to rock this boat or even abandon it. Therefore there will be NO change until this happens.

    Bad news for the plastic -spend some f**king money-fickle fanboys who can now only cry about 80K, just enough to buy a few unknowns in the summer.

  • Robert

    “£159m in the bank, but a lot of outgoing money on stage payments will use up some of that, plus the continuing final payments on the stadium.”

    Typically, net cash inflows in the second half of a season are higher than the first half. For example, in Nov 14 cash balances were 161m, and rose to 228m at the end of May 15.

    So expect to see cash rise – not fall – to somewhere between 200m and 240m by end May 16.

  • Polo

    Well where’s the £200 million that AW has to spend on player transfers that the WOBs been banging on about all season? This report said he has around £70 million and another report said he has around £40 million, now how much a ‘World Class’ player cost these days? If Benteke cost about £36 million, Stirling cost £45 million, and Martial nearly £50 million how much would better players be? I say at least double those prices. So look like its not because AW don’t want to spend, he doesn’t have enough to spend. From the report it said Arsenal have been operating at break even and by not selling any players they made a loss so far. There go the argument the Club and AW is only pinching money.
    The problems with the WOBs is they read to much garbage and don’t think for themselves, just because the media say AW has £200 million it doesn’t mean it’s true, the media asked AW about the £200 million he has on transfer and he laughed it off and say not true. Now we know it’s not true.

    But I’m sure the truth won’t stop the WOBs agenda though.

  • Mandy Dodd

    This is bad news for the WOBs .
    Anyone with a brain knows Wenger does not have spending power as reported in some sources.
    As the report says, there are infra structure projects in place as well that cost.
    Then the increased wages if we want to keep the likes of Ozil….and sign others
    But I guess we could risk it all on ronaldo, bale , benteke, or whoever……right..

  • omgarsenal

    Mandy…………..have you ever entertained the notion of writing for UA. We need a woman’s perspective!!!

  • ClockEndRider

    Andy Mack,
    “So with a salary at 200k per week = 10.4m annual = 52m for 5 years contract means we can spend 80m on one player if one good enough becomes available…”.
    Cash is not profit. Cash is used for used for a number of things other than player purchases, e.g. Capital investment in training ground. Oh and paying staff.

  • Gord

    A big pile of cash sitting in the bank, also makes a company a target for takeovers.

  • Mandy Dodd

    OMG, may do one day, but not sure such writing is my main strength!

  • Andy Mack

    Clockendrider, Yes absolutely. That’s one of the reasons I used the ‘reserves’ figure (135m) rather than the ‘Cash’ figure (159m) the way some other have. Add to this that the cash is also needed for the Colney expansion and other long term projects. But the idea was to show that even the full 135m doesn’t buy a new team of high paid players.

    I noticed on one blog that some guy was saying how bad it was to keep money in the bank, he then mentioned about buying players like it was a guaranteed success whenever one was bought. It didn’t occur to him that we could have spent that all on Falcao or another complete waste…

  • ob1977


    Exactly, Arsene knows him and thinks he’s a good candidate, and knows nothing of the others as they haven’t really said anything. If Arsene knows him and thinks he’s a good candidate then all good, well as good as is realistically hopeful…

  • ob1977

    Let’s be honest nobody going into that job is going to change anything, think USA presidential election, and British parliamentary election.

  • john

    Last summer it was well documented that we had over 100m available for transfers. We spent 15 m on 2 players which left us over 85m.Add to that this season the lucrative tv deal along with sponsorship and one of the highest revenues from gate receipts in world football we should have a hefty sum available. So either we are one of the poorest clubs in the premier league or our billionaire owner is syphoning the profits .What its not all being spent on is the staff, many of whom are on less than the minimum wage.
    Oh and if you purchase a player on a 5 year deal for 10m you do not factor all his wages into the equation.

  • Andy Mack

    John, yes you do factor in his wages just like all good businesses do.
    To date it appears that there’s a possible 3m which is paid to KSE without full details. Personally I feel sure at least some of the 3m was rightly earned but like many I’m not sure it was fully earned. However 3m is a tiny amount of dividend if that is indeed what it really was. Hardly syphoning real profits. The Uzbek would want a far higher dividend if he were to own the club.
    As for spending money, the manager (who knows multiples more about football than you or I do) didn’t see the players available that he wanted to buy. Was that a mistake, yes as shown by the purchase of Elneny. But would we be in a different situation if we’d bought him last summer, unlikely.
    When the right players are actually available and AFC actually have the money (as now)then I’m sure we’ll be trying to buy them.

  • Mick

    ‘What its not all being spent on is the staff, many of whom are on less than the minimum wage.’
    Is that true? Have you got reliable evidence for it. If so Arsenal are blatantly breaking the law. Why have they not been prosecuted?

  • omgarsenal

    Mandy……I appreciate your reticence but you could not do worse than me, and I mean that sincerely. We have a very macho website here, domi8nated by men and a few plastic fanboys, so a woman’s perspective would not only be welcome but also enlightening. Your blogging is excellent and you bring a fresh perspective to the discussions, well thought out, researched and well structured……not always the case with some of the posters. Anyway give it a consideration…..perhaps an initial post on how a woman sees Football or even how a lady might manage the Club’s affairs differently.

  • Notoverthehill

    John, just think!

    Where was this £100 millions, you are now quoting?

    Your nonsense about many Arsenal employees, being paid less than the minimum wage, emphasises your lack of common sense!

    With a contract of 4 to 5 years, a company has a future liability for future salaries that must be allowed for in the accounts.

    The holiday pay that has not been taken, must now be disclosed. £461,000 for 6 months,

    We are also told about the PAYE, NIC and VAT payments £72,8 millions, if you must know. We can expect another £72.8 millions for the second half of the financial year.

    The Arsenal are a subsidiary company within KSE. Therefore internal expenditure is to be expected, between the Head Office and a Branch Office. End of the £3 millions nonsense.

    Your responses are clear evidence that you are the “spend, spend spend”, until you are broke.

  • Polo

    @ John can you provide evidence that AW had £100 million to spend on transfers a few seasons ago? This article say ‘It is understood that around £100 million would be available for squad strengthening, although this figure includes wages as well as transfer fees.’ My understanding of ‘it is understood’ mean don’t know, it’s a guess, or just rumours?

    Wow back then the rumours was £100 million and the WOBs believe it and now it’s £200 million and the WOBs still believe it, next season the media will say AW has £300 million and the WOBs will still believe it.

  • Andy Mack

    I’m pretty sure a couple of years back Arsenal announced that they were committed to making sure that both the club, their contractors and sub-contractors paid at least the ‘London Minimum Wage’.

  • Polo

    This article said £50 million was available for transfers and it’s a war chest, I still can’t find an article that say AW was given £100 million to spend on transfers in a particular season? Please provide those well documented thing you said John.

  • John

    Here are some links saying that we have much more than that..

    We had a 50m warchest 18 months ago so where has the so called extra tv revenue gone?Where has all the extra sponsorship deal money gone?And where have all the massive gate reciepts gone???They havent gone on world class forwards thats for sure.

  • Andy Mack

    So you’re gullible enough to believe the drivel-papers…

    Oh, and the big TV deal payments start next season.
    It was being discussed about making some of the payment early (as in this summer) to allow team to buy earlier…

  • Pat

    I note that Greg Dyke is now saying England will bid for the World Cup. And the USA is going to bid as well. Why should the same big powerful nations always have this money making opportunity?

    Isn’t it time some other nations were allowed to host the World Cup? I think having it in South Africa, Russia and yes even Qatar is a pleasant change. There is a whole world of other nations who enjoy football. Maybe some of them could have a go.

    Blatter and Platini were removed for a relatively trivial reason, and on an accusation that probably would not have held up in a court of law. I smell the whiff of resentment because the USA and England did not win the bids.

    Under Blatter’s leadership South Africa got the World Cup. I will always give him credit for that.

  • Polo

    You seriously believe what Lord Harris said John? You really need to do more research, so Arsenal is going to use up the cash reserve for transfers and won’t consider how it will pay the bills and will stop any infrastructure investments? If this is how the Board operates soon Arsenal will go broke.

    Also, Lord Harris claims had been dismiss by AW and Gazidis that it’s not true. Go look in the Arsensal accounts that’s where the truth is John. There’s no £200 million for transfers. In addition, why those same media outlets don’t mention about the £200 million for transfers since? I say because they know it’s not true.

    What’s happened to that £50 million, if AW was given the £50 million and he didn’t spend it, so I guess it will still be in the transfer budget and will be included (carry over) in next season transfer budget. I don’t know how Arsensal operates financially but at my workplace unused budget money that was allocated for specific tasks that for some reason didn’t get spent is carry forward to the next financial year.

  • Menace

    I am surprised that Untolders are giving John credence. He is a Fantasy football specialist that manages 100m & thinks that tax is a tapas dish. His truth is based on rubbish spouted on other blogs. Blogs that I don’t read nor do I intend to as they have a basic lack of intelligence.

    If an Arsenal supporter cannot see the supreme skills & understanding of the Game that Weger brings to this club, then they will not see anything. There are so many that only want trophies & those have more air than a football. How many of those have visited our trophy room? It is packed with trophies that most clubs would give their right arms for. There is one unique Premier League trophy there that no other club has & probably will not. So for those that think trophies are the sole focus of football here is a question

    What trophy does Arsenal have that is unique for winning the Premier League & describe it?

  • John

    Do you seriously believe everything Arsene Wenger says?And to say that IF Arsenal send a little more than they have at the moment and used some of the reerves they will go broke…Yes really!!!Arsenals 2 main shareholders are 2 of the richest men on the planet who probably could buy every team in the premier league and laliga if they wanted to and still have some leftover to buy sky out so do you really think that would happen .NO i didnt think so.
    You would like to think also that money unspent would roll over to the next season and be added to that budget for transfers,either that or use a small amount of it to subsidise the fans who already pay a fortune to watch Arsenal.What it shouldnt do is go back into stan’s pocket..

  • John

    Why would you believe that article any more than you would believe the mail and express??Because it suits your thory that we dont have that much to spend.
    And also it looks well when the manager of a team (He manages the players to play football) is telling a highly respected board member(whose job it is to run the club and its finances)that he is wrong and has got it wrong about how much money the club has to spend ,strange that.I know a lot of you thing arsene does everything at the club from building the new stadium to scouting for transfers to running the team but being chief accountant he is not…

  • John

    Menace it makes a change you not rattling on incohererently about the referees,but i suppose that will come later as sure as night follows day.
    You think that profit comes before trophys and you judge a club by how much money it makes.I am the other way and think that sport is about ambition and winning trophys and i think you will find most people think this rather than how much money they have.

  • doug

    Can you answer Menace’s question, or will you duck out of it like an MP as you will have to admit to something which will weaken your dying thesis on trophies.

  • Mick

    You should take heed of what Mark Twain once said….


  • Polo

    Interesting, if it wasn’t for property developments and player sales Arsenal would have made a loss for the past 5 years. But don’t let the truth get in the way of the WOBs agenda, and that AW and the Arsenal Board is pinching money.

  • Polo

    @ John, where in the article you posted say conclusively that AW has £200 million to spend? Lord Harris only said Arsenal has £200 million in cash reserve, he didn’t say all that £200 million is for transfers. Read what he say carefully.

    It doesn’t matter what media source or company if it’s not reported as conclusively that AW was given £200 million for transfers than I don’t believe it, to me it is just rumours or speculations.

    Well John, the said manager is in charge of transfers isn’t he? So I would suspect he would know how much budget he would be given, or is AW not in charge of player transfers?? If he is not, then what is all these abuse directed at him about not spending?? Or is that just a convenient tool created to abuse AW by the WOBs?

  • John

    It was so long ago i’ve almost forgotten about it ..It was a gold one .It was the last year before all the referees got together to make a pact that wouldn’t let us finish in the top 2 again.. Wasn’t it menace.
    And polo the manager is in charge of transfers but he is usually told by the board how much he can spend not the other way around.

  • Polo

    @ John, did the Board give AW the £200 million? Or is Lord Harris alone is the Board? Now where did I say AW decide on the amount? I just say AW is in charge of transfers so surely the Board would have advise him that he would get £200 million for transfers? When he was question he said it’s not true. If AW lied don’t you think it would have been big headline in the media by now? Can you explain why there’s no more coverage of this suppose £200 million for transfers from the media? If it’s true, I would think the media would be hounding and mentioning it whenever there is a AW related story.