Do Arsenal have the worst owner in the Premier League?

Do We Have The Worst Owner In The Premiership? by Dan Smith

Mike Ashley took some of his employees out for dinner this week at which he promised them he would pay for them to go on holiday if they yet again secure top flight football, or more specifically, if he gets another year of a television deal worth billions.

Rafa Benitez, of course, would rather his boss be putting his hand in his pocket for transfers. Why this was reported of course was to further put pressure on Newcastle’s main man. Yet it got me thinking if he as bad as Stan Kroenke? In fact do we have the worst owner period?

I’m sure the Toon Army would label gooners ungrateful for moaning about the FA Cups, and top 4 finishes achieved since the American’s arrival in England. But the man in control of our destiny probably couldn’t name our squad, yet alone have the inclination to do anything to get to know them.

The Sports Direct Tycoon was at St James Park last weekend, knowing he would get verbally abused by 50,000 people, which he smiled and took in his stride. Apart from special occasions such as Finals, ‘soccer’ isn’t even the favourite sport of the man who now is our majority share holder. No one is saying only a fan should be allowed to buy a club nor is it right for any business man/woman to be pressured to treat their acquisition as a toy, a process which has changed the history of Man City and Chelsea.

If I worked hard to become a billionaire, no one would tell me how to spend my cash, especially if I wanted to leave it for my family. Through other spokespersons though, promises were made to convince board members who loved the gunners that it would be in our best interest to allow this outsider control. Promises have been broken with a lack of clarity to the customers. That’s his biggest sin. He knows he’s not liked and doesn’t even try to pretend he cares. Even from a PR perspective, surely he’s been advised to at least make out we are as important as his US franchises, which also make profit without winning titles.

Living across the pond means he is not subjected to what David Gold/ Sullivan go through at the London Stadium.
I would never condone West Ham supporters conduct at times but even after pitch protests and acts of violence, they have dialogue with the David’s on Twitter.

The one time, morally, Stan should say something is the yearly share holder meeting. At this point legally fan groups should be allowed an understanding of what’s going on behind the scenes, it’s their money as well! Last year, to get out of speaking in public, our media department arranged his one and only interview with a UK tabloid, with the agreement the press officer would choose the questions. That was only done because no longer could he use Arsene Wenger as his shield. For nearly two decades the Frenchmen was so respected the majority trusted every word he said. In his final months though the world saw through the lies. Mr Kroenke was smartly taking advantage of someone’s love for the club, realising Mr Wenger was so loyal to his place of work, he was happy to take everything on his shoulders.

While the Greatest Manager in our history was being disrespected, to the point I now get backlash for saying he was one of the greatest, Mr Kroenke was banking Champions League money while making a net profit in transfer windows, never caring about being competitive in Europe. His manager was too loyal to give any ultimatums while Gazidis could find excuses such as paying off stadium debt.

In a sense Arsenal FC is quite an easy business to run. A fan base who will complain about ticket prices, merchandise, etc, but who are too big worldwide to ever go away. It’s become an inside joke about the exaggerated attendance figures but in reality only one man is laughing. While you might see empty seats, the truth is they have been purchased, the money men couldn’t care less if they are sat in, fact is they have been brought and paid for. It only impacts the tills long term if thousands staying away affects how many pies and programmes are being sold. It’s worth remembering though if thousands left, just as many are on a waiting list.

Kroenke is not the only American unwanted in this country. Man United and Liverpool supporters planned protests against theirs and got change, we failed by aiming our energy towards the wrong person, with some having their own agendas.

At Anfield, Hicks and Gillet had enough integrity to sell when they knew someone could do better. The Glazers have taken out debt against Old Trafford but at least use it to buy big names. We will only pay big if incomings are guaranteed. Mr Kroenke would only write a 90 million cheque for Lemar if he knew Sanchez was being sold. Once it seemed Sanchez would be a free agent, interest in Lemar died, we never thought about competing with Atletico Madrid for his signature.

Worse, he had the chance to more then get his money back when Usmanov offered to buy him out for more then he paid. Despite knowing his rival had a vision to make us champions, something he cares little about, he remains.

The only hope for us is we will turn out to be a birthday gift for his son who will solely focus on our development. Younger, maybe he will have that desire to win silverware?

Maybe I’m just trying to convince myself?

Dan Smith


  1. simon peter says:

    Mr kroenke is very introverted and let his money talk for him…that his his personality… you can’t change it

  2. gotanidea says:

    No, Huddersfield have worse owner

    Kroenke still gave us expensive players such as Ozil, Sanchez, Mustafi, Xhaka, then Lacazette and Aubameyang in the same transfer window

    This year he gave us Torreira as the marquee signing. Waiting to see his next surprise in January

  3. Phil says:

    Listen-I am NOT a fan of Kronke.But now he has 100% control and ownership of the Club it is HIS Company.Kronke is a businessman.Businessmen as successful as this know how to protect an investment and know how to continue to make pfofitbfrom this investment.
    Let’s see how much he supports the Manager in the transfer market during the next few windows.I believe he will open the purse strings like he has this year.We need to invest in top quality players and Kronke knows this.
    And for everyone who says he runs second rate Sports teams in the U.S. have you seen what he has done to the LA Rams in the NFL?If he invests a fraction of that at Arsenal then we would out buy Citeh.

    1. GB says:

      I agree with you Phil, very well put.

  4. Arsenal family says:

    I won’t pretend to know the inner workings of arsenals board but there has always been talk of his attitude towards spending. It’s either a huge coincidence or not that Aeron Ramsey wage increase was declined as he took over the club. Before I am shot down by those who agree with the decision ‘re Ramseys contract issue stop and think what message we are sending to potentially high money transfers in the future…personally I think growing your own with the additional quality player bought in areas that need it is a better plan given we won’t compete with city man u etc.

    1. Phil says:

      Not too sure you are interpreting the Ramsey contract situation correctly.Lets look at it this way.Auba and Laca have both arrived and are no doubt on more wages than Ramsey.The player quite rightly wanted his new contract to reflect his worth to the team and Club.Ramsey and his agents had plenty of opportunity to negoitiate improved terms while Wenger was still the Manager yet him and his agents chose not to.If Wenger offered a new contract to Wilshere then it goes without saying Ramsey could have got pretty much anything he wanted from a Manager who always seemed to rate the player higher than most of the fanbase.
      Ramsey obviously wanted more than the Club were willing to pay him and he is now surplus to requirements at a Club who could not have looked after a player so prone to injury and inconsistent form any more than they did.
      I don’t feel there will be protest marches and half empty stadiums because Ramsey will soon be let go.Good player.Not a great player.Capable of good form but very rarely showed it.The fact he was voted last seasons Player of the Season says more about Wenger than Ramsey.
      I’m looking forward to a side without Ramsey.AMN will be back in 4-6 weeks so hopefully at full fitness for the New Year.This young lad will make Ramsey’s departure seem worth it

      1. jon fox says:

        One of your best ever posts Phil. Great perspective. What you , I and the many others in our camp on here have to contend with , against those who still mourn Wenger(and there are still SOME who do), is that OUR realism is based on the fact that most of our squad and team are still Wengers men and in some cases; Mustafi, Bellerin, Elneney and others , NO new manager on Earth can reasonably be expected to make those into good enough players for Arsenal. We , in our camp, know that it will take time and a loosening of Kroenkles wallet to change things for the better. Sadly , Phil, I do NOT share your optimistic view of Kroenke doing so – at least not enough – and am therefore resigned to a long wait until things improve enough for a serious title challenge.

        1. Phil says:

          Yeah JF-I know it’s a waiting game to see how Kronke responds to now having total ownership and I try to look at the positives of the situation.If he invests and we improve to Top 4 this season then that then becomes a platform to move forward on.If we make the mistake of operating on restricted budgets then we will simply stay where we are (at best).This is the time for Kronke to really make a statement of intent.Im not too sure who we can bring into the squad in January and you trust SvenM and Raul to be all over this.But if we are in the mix for top 4 after Xmas then there is no doubt this will be an opportunity to strengthen if the right players are available.We can only wait and see but I’m optimistic as results are better than performances at this time and that is far better than the other way round.

  5. GB says:

    Very well put again Phil. I think we all need to cut Kroenke some slack and see how he does nowhe owns the club. As for protests, what are we supposed to protest about? Change has happened which is what we wanted.

  6. Grandad says:

    I really do not fathom the reason for such an article.As Phil has alluded to we are where we are.There is not a league table for owners.

    1. dan says:

      Same reason peeps wanted wenger out?
      Some blame him,i blame owner

  7. ThirdManJW says:

    I think Kroenke is an awful owner, and it’s no coincidence that we have badly regressed since he’s been a part of Arsenal. The fact he wouldn’t even utter a single word to fans at AGM meetings, tells us everything we need to know.

    One could argue, that now he has full control of Arsenal, and that his son is the one mainly involved, that things may improve. Maybe this is Josh Kroenke’s chance to show his dad what he can do. I really hope he’s ambitious to see success back at Arsenal, but I wouldn’t hold your breath!

    Overall, I think we’re in the worst possible situation. We owned by someone who ISN’T an Arsenal fan, someone who probably knows nothing about football (or soccer), and who’s other sports teams (or franchises) are bang average. I have never liked the idea of any one person owning Arsenal, whatever their intentions are.

    We now have a Kroenke dictatorship at Arsenal.

  8. snowden says:

    The teams that Mr kronke owns in the states are medocre teams. Wages are lower. The profit the teams make goes to Kronke’s pocket.

    Arsenal has already started on that route.
    Kronke will pay off the loan he took on to buy the club from the profits the club make each year. As far as we know he has already had 6 million as part share owner. Now as complete owner he con take what dollars out of the club he wants without us knowing.

    The former directors sold us down the swaney.

  9. Auba Arsenal of Lagos says:

    Miguel Almiron? He can’t be as bad as xhaka. Hey ITKs how come you didn’t see this one coming,

    1. D says:

      “He can’t be as bad as xhaka.” Yeah, that’s right, just insult our players at every single opportunity that you get. This is exactly why our fanbase is an absolute laughing-stock, as if it isn’t enough having the pundits, commentators and media attack/insult/criticise us on a daily basis, regardless of whether we win or not, but we also have to have the single worst fanbase in the whole of England.

      1. Phil says:

        Really?The “Single Worst Fanbase in The Country.”Or is it simply supporters having different views on players?Lets take Xhaka.What type of midfielder is he?He certainly not a playmaking No10.He isn’t a wide midfielder.And he has proved by the fact he can’t tackle that he isn’t a CDM.To me He is a CM who links play.Dosent create lots of goals.He scores only occasionally.
        Torreira has an identity about him.He breaks up play.He looks to get the ball forward quickly.He seems to be more mobile and more tactically aware.It is no coincidence Emery brought on Torreira and not Xhaka on Thursday.The player has a defined role and identity.Xhaka has none of these.
        So for me having this opinion makes me a part of the “Worst Fanbase in the Country”?Or a supporter who simply has an opinion that obviously differs from yours?

  10. ozziegunner says:

    The tragic thing is that the EPL has been taken over by so many owners of the ilk of Kroenke, the Glaziers and Ashley.

  11. D says:

    “His manager was too loyal to give any ultimatums while Gazidis could find excuses such as paying off stadium debt.” Are you honestly suggesting that the £700m+ we had to pay for the stadium didn’t affect how much money we had available for transfers?

    1. dan says:

      Not for this long mate
      Put it this way a few years back, if he really cared he could have got suarez
      and that year we only signed Cech it was announced we make most match day revenue in europe

      1. Phil says:

        The stadium cost £400m.Not a penny more.On time.On budget.And is now paid in full I believe.We create revenue with success.This was proven last season with half empty stadiums affecting match day revenue and general apathy.
        Kronke will know he cannot allow this to be repeated season after season.
        The Suarez fiasco made us a laughing stock at the time and we deserved the ridicule we received.At least this will not happen again with Raul and SvenM in Charge.The sorryvthing is If we had offered £50-60m we would have got the player.And where would we have been with him as our CF and not Giroud

        1. ozziegunner says:

          Good contractors and project managers!

  12. jon fox says:

    Some on here seem to think Kroenke should be supported and given a chance. They actually believe or hope he will change financial tack. Well I have news for them; leopards not not change their spots. It is fantasy to think or even hope that Kroenke will ever change. Why would he? He is NOT a fan and cares only for money not glory. So “is he the worst owner” is asked . I say he is the worst of the super rich owners. Ashley, by comparison, is just a jumped up barrow boy and a low life scumbag. Kroenke is a scumbag with loads more money. To me THAT makes him even worse.

    1. Drayton says:

      What makes you think he’s tight on money? We’ve broken the transfer record a number of times, have bought a big name just about every summer, and he gave Wenger a massive contract. Also, he just spent a fortune moving his NFL franchise to Los Angeles, and they’re now the favorite to win the super bowl just 2 years later. Define your requirements of an owner and speak to that, please. Otherwise, all this criticism comes off as simple prejudice to having an American owner, or, simple ignorance.

  13. Drayton says:

    Since 2011, we’ve won 3 FA Cups and have made some big name signings (Ozil, Alexis, Cech, Lacazette, Aubameyang). When in the past did we make such signings? I don’t get the Kroenke criticism. The problem was Wenger not improving his players, not incorporating modern day tactics, and being too loyal to average players (Walcott) and injury-prone players (Diaby, etc). Kroenke got rid of Wenger, approved the moves for Misinlat, the Barca guy and Emery, and here we are right in the hunt for the Premier League title in the midst of a 8-game win streak. I don’t get it. Is it because he’s American? Is it because he bought the club at the same time Wenger was dictator and led us to embarrassment? Oh, and by the way, the Los Angeles Rams look like the best team in the NFL. What are the expectations of an owner? Let’s define that and then make a logical judgment. Lmao. Please explain, bc I don’t get it.

    1. Dan says:

      Very simple
      Those signings you name , he made sure he got money in
      Last summer,you say he got lacazette , then got mony back by selling ox,gibbs,gabriel
      In fact we made net profit
      Auba-sold theo, coquelin,giroud to raise fund
      Cech,10 million-Only signing that summer
      Ozil-was suarez summer-was under pressure to do that

      What bout vanpersie money, fabregas,nasr,summers?Were they replaced?

      Then look how rich is he
      Look how much he makes from fans
      So you ask what i want from owner
      Ambition, spend money we make on decent players,
      Stop selling to rivals
      Offer better wages
      If your tight with money,lower prices
      Hes a billionaire ,with match day revenue ,tv deal, he should not have made net profit

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