Gazidis hits back at lack of Arsenal spending claims

At the Arsenal AGM yesterday, there were questions from the Arsenal Supporters Trust and some of them, inevitably, focused on what is seen as a serious lack of investment in the playing squad in recent years. The recent revelations about the ever increasing cost of supporting the Gunners has only made apparent stinginess even more frustrating.

And with the recent release of the financial figures for last year showing that the club had actually increased it’s cash reserves significantly, while the squad has been left without adequate cover in various areas, Ivan Gazidis was quizzed on the matter.

But as a report by Sky Sports shows, the Arsenal chief executive hit back and rubbished the reports that claimed the club were sitting on some huge pile of cash like Smaug the dragon in the series of films The Hobbit. He claimed that some of the cash balance was being used to pay for recent transfers and that some of it was being kept as a sort of emergency fund in case it was needed. Then the rest, according to the American, had to be kept as part of the deal that the club has agreed with our debtors.

Gazidis said, “There is quite a lot of inaccurate and superficial analysis about the cash that we have available for investment in the squad. That leads to stories for some unspecified reason, we are hoarding a vast cash balance and that is simply not the case.

“There are obvious reasons why we don’t broadcast to the world what our player spending position is, but the position is much more complex than is broadly understood.

“That is £99m in total of the published figure of £207.9m. That leaves us with £108.9m left.

“The second thing to understand is that we have to, always, keep a substantial amount of cash in reserve in order to comply with our debt obligations.

“Most of the remaining cash is needed to run the club across a full season with all the costs, including player salaries, associated with that.

“We do try to keep a reasonable amount of cash available for future investment in the team and we think it is always wise, if possible, to have something in reserve.”

There was also a question raised about whether the reason for Wenger not signing another defender when it was clearly necessary, was that the club did not release enough money. And without directly answering the question, our new chairman suggested that this was not the case at all, putting the ball firmly back in the manager’s court.

Sir Chips Keswick said, “I don’t think that my wish or intention to double guess what Arsene Wenger wants to do – as you know, your board backs him 100 per cent. If he has a plan, we back him, if he doesn’t have a plan, we keep quiet.

“So don’t let’s be in a muddle about who calls the shots about football at the Arsenal Football Club. It is not the chairman, it is not the fans, it is Mr Arsene Wenger.”

So what do you make of this Gooners? Are we being fobbed off or does that answer your questions?

Tags Keswick Wenger


  1. Hafiz Rahman says:

    this is clearly unacceptable……

    we are not spending enough….we have heaps of money lying in the reserves…

    Spend the money GAZIDIS and Wenger…..!!!

    1. Budd says:

      Read the article again.

    2. IceBergKamp10 says:

      Not spending enough is misconception. We have bigger wage structure than Chelsea.
      We are not spending on what we need thats the problem. We spent on Ozil when we already had a cazorla,ramsey,wilshere,ox,etc. when it was clear we needed a striker. We bought welbeck on last day for 16m whereas we could have got mandzukic for 18m in july/august.
      We are reactive in transfers rather than active.That’s our problem.

  2. Aussie Jack says:

    One shouldn`t read too much into the AGM article, some truth, some waffle. One thing however does stand out, Wenger runs the show and as such the result is all his own doing. He has engineered himself into a very powerful position and I would guess reports directly to Kroenke.

    1. Budd says:

      So, after all this commotion that Wenger is just stubborn (and obviously he does not have a clue) it is clear who engineered this total transformation from 2006 onward. If there was any doubt, Sir Keswick put it to rest : board have no clue unless Wenger comes with the idea.

  3. henry12 says:

    If we buy Khedira or a young centre back like laporte everyone will be happy

  4. Hafiz Rahman says:

    we should be spending every cent on strengthening the squad……

  5. zeforel says:

    the game
    the fans,
    the hartbreakn more…….,
    it just business for some up there

  6. davidnz says:

    Arsenal is a sporting franchise.
    Making the top four is the
    measurement of success.
    Participating in the EPL and the ECL
    is the goal. It is not necessary to
    win either trophy. In fact it is preferable
    to not win because then wages can be kept lower
    there for delivering a higher profit margin
    to the owner.

    1. Budd says:

      Check your facts fickle boy. Last time I checked Arsenal was the only club in London winning a meaningful trophy in the last two seasons.

    2. IceBergKamp10 says:

      @ Ezat Davidnz is being sarcastic.imo.

      1. Budd says:

        But of course. Directed which way?

  7. Mozart says:

    Gazidis saying that the stories about their cash balances are false when it was Arsenal themselves who published the report.

    1. Budd says:

      Yes but why don’t you actually read the report because it shows exactly what Gazidis is talking about.

  8. dilla says:

    To Gazidis: If you know anything about your own fans, you should know that we’re NOT complaining about the amount of money spent. We spent 2nd most in the EPL this summer. We’re complaining about the man you give way too much power to who’s decisions have already jeopardized our entire season. Wenger. 2 CB’s: I will PAY Gazidis to find me a club in the world that has only 2 CB’s. Failed transfers, not signing the right players, not signing ENOUGH players, diabolical match tactics, overplaying players, the medical staff debacles, playing players out of position, NOT playing players at all. Not playing the right players. List goes on and on. Gazidis you say that you want our club to be up with Madrid, Barca, Munich. We will NEVER get there under Wenger. Nothing personal I have respect for him. But we’ve spent MORE money than Chelsea, have a bigger stadium, more fans, more revenue. And They’re on top of the league. Meanwhile, we’re not even in top 4, have half a billion injuries, and have officially the most expensive tickets in Europe. We just won’t get there with Wenger. end of rant

  9. Big Gun says:

    The way I see things is that up until a season and a bit ago, we didn’t really have the finances to spend on world class players as we were using the funds for other more important responsibilities, like the stadium debt and who knows what else. Then we bought Ozil and now Sanchez, two top players completely smashing our previous transfer records. It is not like we have been rolling in cash for decades, these funds have only become available recently, and this is why we need to just have some faith a little longer in our manager and board of directors. We have the cash now to bring in a top DM and another quality CB in Jan, and hopefully a world class CF. The first two are a MUST, and if Wenger does not do this, then I’d say call for his head. But until then just realize that Arsenal are on the rise, both financially and in terms of squad strength. Our current squad is the strongest it has been in a decade and I do not think anyone can disagree with that. We won two trophies last year so it is an improvement. If we do not sign a world class DM and CB, then heads must roll. Until then, support the team and manager.

    1. Gigi2 says:

      very well explained,

    2. IceBergKamp10 says:

      Don’t trust wenger anymore.
      “We’ll definitely bring in a CB if vermalen leaves.”
      Correct me if i’m wrong Vermalen left didn’t he ?
      Problem is we don’t want & go for a particular player we need,we just go for who’s available at good price.
      Ozil-Madrid went for Bale.
      Sanchez-Barca went for Suarez.
      Welbeck-Utd went for Falcao.

      1. supertuur says:

        Good we sold Vermaelen, he is still injured at Barca. Their medical staff were ignored when they said not to sign him. You remember last season for Arsenal he was in and out of injury.

        I keep reading stories about Hummels but €40 million is a lot of money. But you get one of the best Central Defenders in the world. A good replacement for Mertesacker. I doubt we will be spending that sort of money.

        Also Virgil van Dijk is being linked a lot. That guy is a beast at 1.93 and 90kg. He loves to go forward and has scored a few goals. I see him as a guy that can handle both CD cover and be a holding midfielder. He is certainly imposing and has a good long shot. He has the makings of being a Yaya Toure in a few years time.

        I see him probably as the most sensible purchase for the coming Winter Transfer period.

        1. rd_gunner says:

          We need 2 players one at CB and one at DM, and both have to be the smartest buys we have ever done- coz a) we don’t have money to throw around b) there aren’t many good players available at CB and DM who are reasonably priced !

          Enough of one player playing multiple positions. We need to have specialists at the back. For me Mert has to be 3rd choice!

  10. Budd says:

    There is no stadium in the first 5 leagues in Europe where a ticket cost 10 pounds. Why don’t you bring the banners inside Emirates?

  11. Noldo....Durban Gunner says:

    Nice 1 Big Gun

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