Anyone expecting an early Christmas in the transfer window needs to wake up quickly.
The thing we all have to acknowledge is that whoever owned Arsenal football club at this moment in time would be unable to operate it any differently given the circumstances.
I’m not suggesting we should accept Kroenke, buy him lavish gifts, serenade him and give him a big sloppy kiss, but it seems there is little alternative.
There are no bids on the table and even if someone bought Stan out lock, stock and barrel, there would be no more money to spend in the transfer window.
As I’ve been saying for months, especially towards the end of the season, Arsenal have to sell heavily to reinvest in the transfer window. The only problem with that is that their current assets aren’t really worth what they need to be, if they were Arsenal wouldn’t be selling them.
So, the much anticipated arrival of up to six new players may be nothing more than a pipe dream considering Arsenal only have £45m available.
I’m also of the opinion that this situation is something of a catch 22.
No champions league football equates to a huge drop in finances, which in turn mean a lack of investment in the transfer window. A lack of investment means that champions league football is less likely and so on.
In terms of Arsenal becoming competitive, they have to win something consistently and compete at the highest level and to be frank, that doesn’t look at all likely in our current position with our present circumstances.
This is also highlighted by the Arsenal Supporters trust (AST) who issues their ‘Analysis of Arsenal’s Financial Position’, which states:
‘To truly get the financial capacity to rejuvenate the squad, Arsenal need to get back in to the Champions league which would add some £50m to the bottom line net of wage increases (through a mix of commercial deal uplifts, higher ticket prices and the higher TV revenues on offer in the Champions league). This would potentially allow bigger name signings to be made without big name sales to finance them’
It goes on:
‘There is a general misconception that Arsenal are debt free and sitting on spare cash. This is incorrect. The analysis of the May 2018 accounts published back in March showed that whilst there was substantial cash held at that time (£231m) it was largely spoken for’
And the summary concludes:
‘Arsenal are cash strapped, boxed in by FFP and saddled with existing debt obligations of £200m that would cost £250m to refinance early. Their rival clubs have much more free cash flow to invest in transfers and salaries and arguably start with stronger squads so it is going to be an uphill struggle to narrow the gap.’
Fears that Arsenal’s decline will be as swift as it is inevitable, will certainly increase with this report. Remember it’s independent and that it is able to represent the concerns of the club’s fans.
The news is something every long suffering fan has suspected over 10 fruitless years and although I’m probably the single biggest anti Kroenke man on the planet, there’s nothing that can be done between the debt, loss of earnings, repayments, wages and FFP.
It looks bleak in one transfer window and only sustained success will turn it around. No pressure Unai.