Monday, July 23, 2007

Arsenal issue warning over parasitic owner investors...

Rivals Arsenal have issued a warning to their supporters over the dangers of new ownership. The words of wisdom come in the wake of yet more media talk of potential new investors who are being linked with the North London club.

Bernie Eccleston the F1 supremo has become the latest name to throw his hat into the ring, the talk is that he could join forces with Stan Kroenke the American billionare, to mount a Gunners buyout.

However, Arsenal's MD Keith Edelman has warned that any potential investor could take more money out of the club than they would put in.

"Anybody who invests in a club, particularly from overseas, will want financial returns.

"Some other clubs with billionaire owners, their debts are mounting up."

Edelman isn't the first to talk about the debts of other clubs, Doug Ellis the former Villa owner and David Whelan of Wigan Athletic have also said the same thing.

It doesn't take a genius to workout who the three big-wigs were referring to, our very own Manchester United. The clock is very much ticking for United, under the Glazers' and their debt laden regime.

While things are looking very good on the field of play together with a summer of big new signings and coming off the back of a fabulous title victory, many United supporters are now feeling the pinch following the all too predictable huge increases of season tickets and everything else from the price of pies to match day parking.

United recently decided to force all season ticket holders to join the club's automatic cup scheme - a move which further angered many already cash strapped supporters.

United are easily the best supported club in the land and last season they were more or less sold out every week, and so it was entirely unecessary to force reluctant season ticket holders onto the auto cup scheme. A United supporter is making a legal challenge over this very issue and it remains to be seen what the outcome will be.

Roman Abramovich is something of a one off as few can match his wealth and generosity, but nonetheless Chelsea are very much a rich-man's-play-thing, it remains to be seen what will become of them when the Oligarch has satisfied his needs.

Sadly, I suspect that it is only a matter of time before Arsenal follow the other clubs who've been sold over the last few years.

4 comments:

  1. I thought the idea of running any business, and lets face it, running a premier league club is like running a business these days , is to make a return on the investment. Are you telling me the current Arsenal board is in it only for the love of the game? Rubbish. You need to relax about the Glazers. They have delivered a championship and added to an already very good squad. The yseem to be decent enough stewards of the club. What about all the owners that came before them and won nothing. Worry about what's happening on the pitch, not what is going on in the boardroom. Owners come and go. Man Utd is not Leeds Utd, never will be. Leeds were run by two-bob muppets that over extended themselves and left the club in the shit. United are a global franchise, and when the Glazers decide to move on, you can be sure they will sell the club to someone who knows what they are doing. Get Tevez on board and the Champions league is a real possibility this year to go with another premier league title. Top blog by the way.

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  2. You're right about a couple of things, but very wrong on one big issue.

    A few people like David Moores and Freddy Sheperd have made a lot of money out of their investmets in their respective clubs.

    Others like John Wardle and his partner actually lost money on their investment. The City owners bought their shares at £1, but ended up selling them for a lot less. City were in a mess and going nowhere hence the desperate need to sell at a loss.

    Those that have made money have been around for a good while and were able to make huge gains not least because they bought at the right price. The Glazers' did not - worse still they bought in with borrowed money and lots of it.

    If anyone seriously believes that United and the Glazers' will get out of this mess without serious implications then I'm afraid you're in denial about the gloomy financial position the club is in.

    The ONLY way the Glazers' can get out of this mess is if someone like Abramovich comes in and bales them out. I do not see it happening. Why pay over the odds for something which you could buy for a lot less when it goes pear shaped?

    So something will have to give.

    I predict that the club will either be sold on (unlikely), or it wil default on it's loans within 18 months to 2 years time and then the walls will come tumbling down.

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  3. Anyone who buys a house does it using borrowed money. The Glazers are no different. I don't know why you think debt is such a bad thing. Debt can be managed. The Glazers know they have to do two things to keep the wolves from the door - bring success on the pitch, and build the global brand. They seem to be doing ok so far. As long as the team keeps winning, they keep attracting sponsorship deals like AIG, sell more shirts around the world etc, the creditors will be more than happy. Chelsea are attempting more or less the same thing, since they know the Russian is going to stop bankrolling the club eventually. But United are miles ahead of them. The only way it goes south for United and the Glazers is if the TV money dries up, since that's attracting all the new investors. It's not all doom and gloom at United, far from it. I bet the two irish racehorse owners would not have stumped up the cash for Nani and Anderson, let alone Hargreaves and Tevez. The comments from the Arsenal board merely sound like a poor attempt to have a dig at one of their rivals. They should worry about getting their own house in order. What have they done this summer except sell their best player? And Wigan? Well they are going down this year.

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  4. To use your analogy. Yes debts can be managed, but it doesn't stop many home owners from losing their homes because they've defaulted on their mortgage.

    Further to which I think you've made your point.

    Clearly you believe that the club is safe within the Glazers' hands. I do not.

    Comparisons with other clubs in this scenario are actually a bit pointless, other top clubs have been taken over by would be money-grabbing opportunists, but the debt situation is very different to that at United. I only brought this subject up because I agree with the warnings which have been made by hard-headed businessmen who know what they are talking about. Though it shouldn't take a genius to work out that the sums at United do not add up.

    No club in the history of world football has ever been saddled with debts like those of United. I and many other Reds can only see it ending in tears.

    If in 18 months time I've been proven wrong then I will hold up my hands.

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