Geez. I wish the new season would hurry up and get here. At present. my days consist of hopefully opening up various website, only to be met with crushing disappointment when I discover there’s bugger all happening.
I could mention the interminable saga of Robin van Persie, but, quite frankly, I’m beginning to just wish he’d do us all a favour and leave – all this waiting isn’t helping him, us or the club itself.
What I’d like to talk about is Arsenal’s transfer policy. For years now, we have admirably made do with what we have at our disposal. Financially, we’re the 4th richest club in the world, yet when it comes to transfers, the board seems happier with sustainability and little risk. Selling our stars on for huge prices now seems to be a regular occurance.
I don’t dispute that prudence financially is a smart approach in football’s current climate of mega-rich investors, FFP and uncertainty. You only need look at Rangers as an example of what poorly managed debt can do to a huge club. What I do debate is our insistence on not using what we have.
Arsenal – from what I’m told – have money. If we wanted to shell out £30m on a player, we could. What irks me is that we won’t. Spending somewhere in that region on players like Neymar or Ganso isn’t going to destroy the club – chances are, we’d sell them on after 4 years for a huge profit, anyway.
There has to be a point when we realise that the current model is working to keep the club secure, but it’s affecting our ability to compete. Football has changed drastically since the days of Wenger’s greatest success. Whether we care to admit or not; money rules these days. The clubs that have it – Chelsea, Man City, Madrid and Barcelona – will always be the ones that sign the best players.
I’m not saying we should abandon all the good work we’ve done – not at all. Personally, I believe that the is a medium in which we should operate, and an greater level of competitiveness/player retention would come if we at least tried to slug it out with the big boys. Arsenal are far from a David matching up to a Goliath, Arsenal are far from restricted by anything other than our own policy.
If I asked anyone reading this if a bit of uncertainty financially would come on the back of signing Neymar for £40m – how many of you would be happy to accept that? I’m not suggesting the owners do anything stupid, but I’m getting a little tired of losing world-class players every summer. I’d like Arsenal to start buying them.
That’s all for today, folks. I shall return tomorrow. Please leave a comment or two in the handy section below.