Ticket Price Rises
Arsenal announced before the weekend defeat against Manchester City that they were planning to rise tickets in line with the rate of inflation – a 3% rise. Now under normal circumstances, I would understand this. Costs go up every year, so all companies have to squeeze their prices up a little every year. Either that or find additional revenue elsewhere. And that is my problem, the new Premier League TV deal will increase clubs income by 71%. The new Champions League deal is expected to double a clubs income, and the new Puma kit deal is a 428% increase on the old Nike one.
By my rough maths, once these new deals kick in, Arsenal will be increasing their income by around £83 million (£25m extra in sponsorship, £25m extra in CL money, £35m extra in PL money). This will see our revenue increase to around £335m, or around a 38% increase.
So why, I ask, are prices going up with the justification that it is ‘inflation’ when our increased revenue from other area’s far outstrips the inflation increase? As I have explained before, the club could have decreased prices to just £21.25 and maintained the same revenue as now. Where is all this money going to end up? Will it go straight to the players pockets? Will the board give themselves pay rises and bonuses? Or will they start paying out a dividend.
All I know is that with this 3% increase, the club have taken us for mugs. Will I continue paying? Yes, because I am a mug.
Andre Villas Boas
Tottenham, the gift that just keeps on giving. Just over a week until Christmas and they have already handed out their presents. A 5-0 loss at home to Liverpool was followed up by the sacking of AVB. To think, he spent £100 million and managed to get Spurs fans to think that they were title contenders, before a ball was kicked. They have been in a negative spiral since they beat Arsenal in March.
No matter what you might currently think of Arsene Wenger, it must bring a smile of joy to you that he has seen off:
- Francis (1994–1997)
- Hughton (1997c)
- Gross (1997–1998)
- Pleat (1998c)
- Graham (1998–2001)
- Pleat (2001c)
- Hoddle (2001–2003)
- Pleat (2003–2004c)
- Santini (2004)
- Jol (2004–2007)
- Ramos (2007–08)
- Redknapp (2008–12)
- Villas-Boas (2012–13)
So after finishing 2nd, we knew we were in for a tough draw, and for the second season in a row, we have been drawn against Bayern Munich. For me, this draw brings happiness and sadness.
The happiness is we have proved they are beatable, having won 2-0 at their ground last year. For me, Munich hold no fear, as I am of the honest belief they have gone backwards this year. They spent over €60 million on just two players in the summer (Thiago & Mario Gotze), 2 players who they did not need due to the fact they had many other similar players already in their squad (Kroos, Ribery, Robben, Shaqiri, Muller). They also let go Luis Gustavo, who was a defensive rock for them last season, and Mario Gomez, their only proper striker.
Guardiola is trying to copy his Barcelona style of play, but there is a problem, he does not have Lionel Messi. They might be top of their league, unbeaten, having scored 42 goals in 16 games, but this is more of an indication to how poor and uncompetitive the Bundesliga is, than how good Bayern Munich are. It is certainly a league currently on a downward spiral, and you have to wonder whether Munich will struggle to get up for the game competitively after playing so many easy games in Germany.
If we take confidence from our win their last year, and put in a better performance at home, we could win the tie, comfortably.
17 goals in 11 league games this season. We offered £40,000,001 in the summer, we will have to offer a lot, lot more now. The controversy surrounding the deal is up for debate. In my opinion, we were under the opinion we could sign him for anything over £40,000,000, hence the bid of £1 extra. Why pay more when £1 was enough to trigger the deal. And offering £40,000,000 is certainly not a derisory offer like same pretend. You have to think, however, after having that offer knocked back, should we have pushed further. Told Liverpool to name their price? In hindsight, paying £60,000,000 for Luis Suarez in the summer would have been a good piece of business. But I can imagine the uproar had we signed him for that price, considering he was due to miss the first half dozen games.
What he has shown is the importance of having the something special upfront. The difference between Manchester City and Arsenal this season could be Sergio Aguero. The goal scorer who can turn a draw to a win on his own. We do not have that. Is there going to be someone available in January of sufficient quality? Who knows. But if Lewandowski or Suarez are available, we should be leading the race to sign them.