Emirates outfit have revealed that they will resist any major squad investment this January.
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Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis has revealed the club will still resist major investment in the transfer market in January, despite the club announcing pre-tax profits of £56million.
Despite the majority of Gunners fans hoping to see big-name arrivals over the course of the next 12 months – especially if the team are challenging for a first trophy in six years – Gazidis says he still will not sanction major player purchases.
‘Most of [the profit] goes back into the playing side, whether into player contracts or transfer fees but that doesn’t mean we can compete at the level of the Manchester Citys of this world in the transfer market,’ he said.
‘Those types of fees and those types of salaries are not sustainable for any football business.
‘But it still means, I believe, that we can compete with them on the pitch [because] we have a policy of building and not buying.
‘That’s a difficult path to tread sometimes, but as a result of that policy we’re seeing a tremendous number of good young players progressing and developing into the finished article and I think our performance against Spurs on Tuesday night illustrated this.’
Arsenal’s 4-1 victory at their local rivals in the Carling Cup featured several young players – although the squad was more notable for the number of senior first-teamers included.
It has been argued this is a change of tack from manager Arsene Wenger, who has been without silverware of any kind since 2005.
However, the club’s financial health is clearly booming, and Gazidis said the club had made ‘good progress in the last year’.
‘I am excited by the opportunities we have in front of us,’ he said, while also revealing overall spending on player wages had increased.
‘We continue to see upward pressure on player wages. A part of that is because we’ve invested fairly aggressively in our young player pool, and we have secured their long-term future with the club.
‘This has been a very successful period of investment but it costs money.
‘A part of it is also driven by the external environment in which we operate where player costs continue to go up.’
In their financial statement, the Gunners revealed the £130m debt incurred by redeveloping the site of their old Highbury stadium into residential flats had been completely paid off – contributing to a £10.5m rise in overall profits, year-on-year, to May 2010.
The results showed Arsenal’s group turnover increased to £379.9m, from £313.3m in 2009, boosted by the income generated from property sales although football profits fell, in part due to the five fewer home matches played last season.
In comparison, Manchester United reported pre-tax profits of £48.2m in January while league champions Chelsea announced a £44.4m loss in December. (Metro)
Arsenal are one of the few Premier League clubs that are actually making a profit, and yet will leave their fans frustrated yet again this January by keeping the money locked away, and not making any major signings.
Arsenal are a fantastic side and play some wonderful football. With a few more first-class signings, and under the guidance of Arsene Wenger, they would have the potential to be one of the best teams in Europe.
Fans have been crying out for a new goalkeeper for well over a year now, and it must surely be a priority for the team in the next transfer window? It will be interesting to see whether the comments made by Gazidis are just a smokescreen, or if the club will resist spending once again.