It’s been a torrid 7months for Arsenal Fans. From boasting of one of the most reputable midfields in club football the team has now found itself in the murky waters of mediocrity. Losses to AC Milan and to Sunderland in recent times has all but exposed the gaping inept in the team. To make matters worse, the team has continued to loose star players season in season out whilst attracting average players in return. A lot has been made out of Arsene Wenger’s knack for being attracted to bargain players thus loosing out on more established and proven players.
But can we blame Wenger so much for the calamity that is Arsenal? He is widely known to have followed the true tenets of football and business by ensuring that he runs on a balanced budget. Unlike other rivals, Arsenal spend according to its means. They run a financial model others should be proud of. Players are bought only within budgets. The wage bill is structured to compliment bargain buys thereby keeping their most precious players around. Despite this laudable and efficient model things haven’t quite worked out for the club. In contrast, their model has been criticized by both their fans and rival fans who only see trophies as the dividend for football. Viability of a club is no longer seen as means to an end but a stumbling block to an end. The model clubs are Man City and Chelsea who have rich owners that have used their money to bankroll purchase of high profile players for prices previously unheard of. So just like Governments, these clubs run on subsidies from their owners. They annually churn out losses despite stacking up trophies. Yet they are glorified by fans and even the press who should no better.
It’s no wonder most Arsenal fans back the imminent take over of Russian billionaire Usmanov. Can you blame them? Arsenal fans too want subsidy. That’s the only way to compete in these times. A period where the objectives of fans will only be the same with that of the owners if and only if trophies are being won.