Emirates Stadium side continue to search for elusive success but apparently the North London club are just a couple of years from golden era.
Arsenal AGM’s have become a hugely enthralling affair in recent years, no other side’s Annual General Meeting receives as much interest or column inches, and today’s was seemingly no exception.
Clearly the North London side would have hoped to have such an event not follow two limp defeats in five days but such was the case and the Gunners representatives would have been expected a rough ride and a rough ride is indeed what they received.
Embattled chief Executive Ivan Gazidis said: ‘In the next two years, we will have the financial resources to sit and compete among the leading clubs in the world, which is an extraordinary achievement.
‘Financial success is relevant because it supports our football vision… the money we make is made available to our manager and he decides how to invest those funds.
‘Arsene has done a magnificent job against the spending of our major competitors.’
So the upshot of such a statement would appear to suggest that having cut costs and reduced their transfer budget Arsenal are now in a financially healthy position from which to now hand resources to Arsene Wenger in order to properly invest in his squad, which begs the question. Why was he not handed these funds sooner?
Year upon year the club has spent in general terms less money on new additions than they made from player sales. Now whilst this policy is financially prudent it will inevitably lead to a squad of reduced quality. It’s not rocket science.
As a result the marriage of financial stability and footballing failure is a perfect and expected one.
Arsene Wenger provided perhaps the most noteworthy soundbite by claiming that clinching Champions League football was akin to winning a trophy. This will of course infuriate some but in many ways it’s hard to argue the merits of what he is suggesting. Clearly any Gunners fan would love to win the FA or League Cup but they certainly would give up such a success to secure a seat at the top table and a Champions League berth.
However this is of course window dressing. Arsenal WERE challenging for proper titles, for Premier League triumphs and Champions League successes but something has gone seriously awry. The wheels have fallen off somewhere down the road and now the Emirates Stadium club gives off the air of one that is happy with it’s lot, happy to finish in the top four, happy to continue to make money from star player sales.
Of course the supporters are incensed by the manner in which their club is being run. Clearly it’s all well and proper to run Arsenal as one would run any other large company but if hardly any other side in European football doing likewise it kind of defeats the purpose.
If Arsenal were playing for the league title of sides accumulating wealth then the seven year long silverware drought would have ended years ago.
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