• Arsenal Message Board

  • What do u guys think? Do we ned a rich benefactor in the way chelsea and liverpool now have? Can we compete without a rich benefactor??

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    • Abramovitch is really a very rare breed. After forging his oil empire in blood he was forced into cashing out by Putin. Being a 33 year old with a few trillion blood-stained rubles laying around and a lot of free time, he decided to dump some of his petty change into a club on the verge of bankruptcy.

      With nothing better to do with his time, he decided to go out and spend a few hundred million quid on some players to fill out his club roster. Really, you find very few rich people willing to waste money on a very low return business like a soccer club.

      It worked out well for Pompey this season, who got some money to buy a few players, but Arsenal isn't a small club, and I believe that we currently have the resources to compete in the game of putting gathering up players to make a solid team.

      United was bought out by a Billionaire owner, yet there system of signing and developing players hasn't changed all that much.

      I don't really care, if Arsenal is owned by a publicly traded company or owned by some billionaire. However, I'd be somewhat upset if we went the Chelsea route. I wouldn't argue if someone wanted to through in a few pounds into the transfer kitty, but I'd hate to become a team of mercenaries like Chelsea. I like the "Arsenal way", and I like Wenger's philosophy of signing and developing young talent. I fear that a big money owner might change that the Club's philosphy. It hasn't seemed to in United's case however, and if the philosophy doesn't change, I wouldn't be too upset.

    • Yes and no....

      A salary cap works well in practice, but there are so many ways of getting round it.

      Let's say the maximum annual salary for a player was £1m....

      What's to stop them getting monthly bonuses "for retaining theire premiership status".

      What's to stop them being sponsored by, for example, the club shop for a few million a year. There are just far to many loopholes.

      Also, I don't think Abramovich will walk away anytime soon, but eventually one of the big backers will get fed up at the lack of return on their investment. Whether it's at Chelsea, West Ham, Villa etc it's going to end up very messy.

      As everyone says, Arsenal have always tried to be a "traditional" club. For example, they still had a marching band long after every other club had moved onto a blaring PA system. While I realise every club needs to move with the times, a foreign owner isn't a neccessity.

    • All very good points, what I can say is this surely vindicates Wengers approach to buying cheap foreign players instead of over priced unproven local talent, as every other club is going to get owned by some rich individual and in some cases will offer unrivaled spending money which the likes of Arsenal will not be able to compete with.

      In my opinion a salary cap (ie precentage of total revenue) needs to be introduced or the premiership will become a two tier league and will greatly damage the sport.

    • Everybody just hopes he will walk away. I am worried about the trend but I would rather see LFC in foriegn hands than where Leeds are for instance.
      I would rather see LFC with a British manager but am not convinced that there is anybody who could have given us the trophies that our foreign guys have acheived.
      I wish you luck in keeping Arsenal a traditional club.

    • Chelsea would be in serious trouble if Abramovich left, but why is everyone convinced he will just walk away. If all the other bigs clubs end up with rich sugar daddies as owners, we would have little option but to follow, but i do believe the club would loose it's soul by doing so.

    • Yup, the other thing to consider is....

      Why are these investors so rich? Why is anyone rich? Because they are ruthless. They want to see maximum return for minimum return. There are very few people who can spend their "beer money" on owning a football club.

      Look at Malcolm Glazer. Which huge signings have United made since he joined? Then think of some of the signings they made whilst still owned by their shareholders. Rooney (£23m), Ferdinand (£30m)? And who have they signed since then? Vidic etc, while Van Nistelrooy left for £10m (ok, this wasn't for financial reasons, but United haven't (as of yet) signed a huge star striker to replace him).

      And as everyone says, look at Leeds. Leeds who went from being in the Champions League qtr finals to relegation in the space of two seasons. They had to selll Ferdinand, Woodgate, and eventually pretty much every other half decent player just to keep the club afloat. The reason? Their owner, Peter Risdale.

      To put it in perspective, these are the players who left and joined Leeds last season:


      * France Sebastian Carole - Brighton & Hove Albion - Free Transfer
      * England David Livermore - Millwall - £250,000
      * England Kevin Nicholls - Luton Town - £700,000
      * England Ian Westlake - Ipswich Town - Part Exchange *(Dan Harding + undisclosed fee (£400,000 rising to £500,000 depending on clauses))
      * Australia Hayden Foxe - Free Agent
      * Republic of Ireland Jonathan Douglas - Blackburn Rovers - Undisclosed Fee


      * England Jermaine Wright - Southampton - Free - Released from Contract
      * England Danny Pugh - Preston North End - £250,000
      * England Michael Ricketts - Southend United - Free Rising depending on Clauses
      * England Simon Walton - Charlton Athletic - £500,000 Rising to £1,000,000 depending on Clauses
      * England Rob Hulse - Sheffield United - £2,200,000 rising to £3,000,000 depending on Clauses
      * England Ian Bennett - Sheffield United - Free
      * Australia Joel Griffiths - Newcastle United Jets - Undisclosed Fee (Estimated £100,000)
      * England David Livermore - Hull City - Undisclosed Fee (Estimated £250,000)
      * England Dan Harding - Ipswich Town - Part Exchange (Dan + Undisclosed Fee For Ian Westlake)
      * Republic of Ireland Ian Morris - Scunthorpe United - Undisclosed Fee
      * Norway Eirik Bakke - S.K. Brann - Free - Mutual Contract Termination
      * Scotland Nick Gray - Halifax Town - Released
      * England Mark Wilberforce - Scarborough - Released
      * Scotland Steven Mckeown - Alloa Athletic - Released
      * England Steve Stone - Retired

      Notice how many more players went OUT rather than in.

      Imagine if Abramovich left the club and Chelsea were dropped back into the financial mess they were in before he bought the club. With their much expanded wage bill, you can bet the "out" list would read something like

      Terry, Lampard, Cole, Cole, Drogba, Shevchenko, Ballack, Essien, Cech etc etc

    • I'm going to disagree with you guys. I think at the very least Arsenal should listen to offers or takeover bids. It's never bad to be owned by the large company or foreign owner. As a die-hard Arsenal fan, it hurts me to say this but it's true -- we cannot say Arsenal can compete against Chelsea and Manchester United, when they are 10 pts, and 16 pts. ahead of us in the beginning of the season. What money has given Chelsea is depth - they are able to win in the CL, Premiership, FA Cup, because they can rotate their players well. For us, we cannot do that - sitting out Henry, Fabergas, or Toure could spell disaster. So I think we could certainly use investment, or at least should not have a negative attitude towards it. If Liverpool's new owners brought in Ronaldihno and Kaka to Liverpool, well I think Arsenal would be in serious problems!

      Just my thinking.

      • 1 Reply to TumainiM
      • Nope, gotta disagree with you. The trouble with private ownership is that eventually money or patience runs out. We have a board that have managed to spend 500 million pounds on a new stadium and redeveloping the old ground without running into financial ruin. Yes the purse strings have been tight for the last few years but look at what Wenger has done in that time. The fact he's now signing people like Toure, Fabregas, Djourou etc to long-term contracts shows Arsenal never have to be a selling club again. We've supposedly got 30million in the bank and that will just keep going up with the increased stadium rvenues. We can't compete with Abramovich, nobody in Europe can, but if Liverpool want to sell out to the Arabs then that's their choice.

        It's not how much money you have, it's what you do with the money and who is making the buying and selling decisions.

    • I personally don't think Arsenal need it, as long as we can compete to the level where we are in the CL each year and make it out of group bar perhaps the odd slip up then sufficient revenue will be there to fund the club, purchases and pay off the stadium debt. In any event we are not going to need to sign so many players now we have such a conveyor belt of youth coming through.

      The only sticking point is what the current directors want to do with their shares, if Fizman for instance with something like 25% wanted to sell then who would he sell to, who has that kind of money and would be happy buying into the club but only getting 25%.... the type of person wanting to spend that kind of money might only do so with a view to taking the whole club...... so while I think the current directors will not sell because football is doing well and many of them have family connections there will certainly come a time when some will sell and that is where we'll see what happens. personally I am in favour of spplit ownership of the club between a number of directors for the long term becuase that produces good management I think.

    • Historically Arsenal have always been a traditionally conservative (not politically) club.We tend not to follow the latest 'in thing'........so i don't think arsenal will go down the 'one single rich owner' route.

      Personally i think that we can still compete(maybe not financially)with Chelsea,man utd,liverpool,west ham??? for the top prizes.
      Also,having a rich owner(although it helps)does not guarantee success.....look at AC milan,inter,newcastle (under sir john hall)....the list is endless.
      The most important thing in a football club is the mananger and the players.

      • 1 Reply to nicky
      • I agree. I wouldn't like to see Arsenal taken over. I'd hate to think the money-man could pull out at any time and leave the club up s**t creek. I'd also hate some arrogant prick on the board saying "by 2014, we'll be an internationally recognised brand". Chelsea and Villa were both on the verge of going bust when they got bought out, but Arsenal have money and a massive revenue stream from the new stadium and property sales.