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Reason why Arsenal aren't signing players revealed - and it's tough to take for fans

Irish Mirror logoIrish Mirror 10/1/2019 Irishmirror.ie
Unai Emery wearing a suit and tie: Arsenal's Unai Emery during the Premier League match with Fulham © Arsenal FC via Getty Images Arsenal's Unai Emery during the Premier League match with Fulham

Arsenal fans have been dealt another blow for their club, after Unai Emery admitted the club have no money to spend in the transfer window.

And it has now been revealed just why the Gunners have had to tighten the purse strings.

The North London club are locked in talks with Barcelona over the proposed signing of Denis Suarez .

But the deal has hit a sticking point, with Arsenal only prepared to sign the player on loan.

This has come as a surprise to the clubs fans, given that the club are among the wealthiest in the Premier League.

So just why are Arsenal not buying players?

a man with a football ball in front of a crowd © Credits: Getty Images

Getty Images

 

Well, the problem comes from Arsenal's self-sustainable business model led by owner Stan Kroenke.

Unlike some of the other clubs in the division like Manchester City , majority shareholder Kroenke does not invest any of his own money into the club - despite having an estimated worth of £7 billion.

The financial restrictions on Arsenal's accounts are self-imposed, with the club only spending money that is accrued from funds generated from revenue.

a man wearing a suit and tie © Credits: AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

The club's Managing Director, Vinai Venkatesham, said in October: "We have a self-sustaining business model at this club. That means all the investments we make on the pitch are funded by the revenues we generate off the pitch.

"And we're really confident we can be successful with this model. The ambition we have for this club is completely possible to be achieved in the business model that we've got.

"We've got a really clear ambition and that is to win the biggest trophies in the game. We want to do that in our way, respecting our values, history and traditions."

a man wearing a suit and tie © Credits: Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arsenal FC via Getty Images

According to a study conducted by football finance expert  Swiss Ramble , Arsenal are a long way off their rivals when it comes to spending power.

The study shows the difference between how much of their owner's money each club has spent since 2008.

Manchester City top the table, with the super-rich Shekih Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan handing a staggering £1.275billion to the Citizens.

Aaron Ramsey wearing a football uniform © Credits: EMPICS Sport

EMPICS Sport

 

Chelsea come in a distant second, with a selection of managers having spent £520million of Roman Abramovich's cash.

Manchester United bosses have between them shelled out £318million of their owner's money, while Liverpool complete the top four having splashed £257million.

Arsenal, all the while, are nowhere to be seen, having spent £0 of of Kroenke's money since 2008.

The cash used on transfers has instead come from club operations.

a man standing in front of a crowd © Credits: Getty Images

Getty Images

 

This has become increasingly harder with Arsenal failing to achieve lucrative qualification to the Champions League for the past two seasons, as Football London report.

Recent analysis of Arsenal's financial position for 2017/18  by the Arsenal Supporters' Trust  estimated that matchday, broadcast and commercial revenue fell by about £40m on the previous year - with £35m of that attributed to non participation in the Champions League.

Unai Emery wearing a suit and tie © Credits: Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arsenal FC via Getty Images

 

And the analysis also showed that at the same time there was a major increase in the wage bill from £200m to £235m - which included pay offs to Arsene Wenger and his staff.

Amortisation costs (cost of buying players spread over length of their contract) also increased significantly - by £19m.

The AST estimated that the increase in costs and reduced revenue added up to an operating loss of £44m for 2017/18 - A figure that was offset by the sales of players such as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain with a football ball © Credits: PA

PA

 

In the summer just gone, Arsenal brought in five new signings at a cost of around £70m and that followed on from splashing out a club-record £56m to bring in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang last January.

And with very little money expected to come in for player sales, the AST predicted the club would make an operating loss of around £60m in 2018/19 - with the wage bill running at unprecedented levels following Mesut Ozil's mega deal which was signed in January, as well as the recent captures of Aubameyang, Hernikh Mkhitaryan and the five summer additions.

That bloated wage bill - one of the highest in Europe - also leaves the club very little wriggle room in terms of complying with the Premier League's financial fair play rules - which currently allow clubs to increase their wage bill by £7m a season.

a crowd of people watching a football ball © Credits: Getty Images

Getty Images

 

That figure can be increased by other revenue streams such as commercial deals, but Arsenal's commercial income has flatlined in recent years as previous deals have come towards an end.

Crucially, things will improve in the summer, with the new commercial deals with Adidas and Emirates due to kick in and with some high earners such as Aaron Ramsey, Petr Cech and Danny Welbeck to come off the wage bill.

So Emery will have money to spend ahead of his second season in north London, with a summer transfer budget before player sales of around £50m, but until then Arsenal will have to make good use of the loan market because it's clear Kroenke will not be dipping into his own pocket.

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