16th of November 2012 Author: Glo Wood
Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis has made a statement meant to assure fans that the club will be able to compete with any side in the world over the next few seasons. However, the Gunners have not won a trophy since 2005, when they lifted the FA Cup, and have made their worst start ever to a Premier League season. But Gazidis argues the club is in a powerful position for the future.
"As we look to the next two, three years we will have an outstanding platform on which to compete with any club in the world," he said. The Gunners moved to the Emirates Stadium in 2006/7 and have increased their turnover from £177.7m then to £243m in their latest public data. Their shirt sponsorship and manufacturer deals are due for renewal next season and the club can expect big improvements in that area. Their shirt sponsorship deal for instance, gives the club just £5.5m per season while Manchester United are getting about £28m a season. More money are also expected from the renewal of the £13m shirt manufacturer deal they currently have with Nike.
"Now we are in that stadium, the first part of our vision has been realised," said Gazidis. "Now we are at the stage where some of the commercial deals that were tied into the construction of the stadium, and enabled us to take that first big step, will be renegotiated. When that happens, we will take the second big step forward and that will be comparable in magnitude to moving to the stadium itself. At times it's been a challenging project, but we will have catapulted ourselves into the elite clubs on the European scale and that, for us, has been what the last 10 years has been about. Very clearly, it will push the club forward and put us into the top five clubs in the world in revenue terms, which will be a fantastic position to be in."
The chief executive also believes Arsenal will be helped by the introduction of Uefa's financial fair play regulations next season, which allow clubs to make only set losses initially before being required to break even. The rule could help Arsenal to start competing for some of the top players in European football as they lost key players such as Kolo Toure, Emmanuel Adebayor, Cesc Fabregas, Samir Nasri, Robin van Persie and Alex Song during the last few seasons.
"As our financial capability develops, as economic rationality enters the world of football, our ability to compete at salary levels for the very best talent will be enhanced," Gazidis said. "Uefa are under tremendous scrutiny and pressure. Every indication we have ever had from Uefa is that they are very serious about this. Uefa president Michel Platini has created this as his platform and if they don't enforce FFP well and strictly, their credibility will be shot and they are very well aware of that."
Arsenal are not seen as favourites in any competition this season. Here is a breakdown of their outright odds from Bet365:
Premier League - 50/1
League Cup - 2/1
FA Cup - 8/1
Champions League - 25/1
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