Author Archives: keenosafc

Arsenal’s top 4 hopes begin or end today

16 games; 48 points.

That is what is left in the 2019/20.

Every year each season seems to go quicker. Just as you are thinking the season is getting going, you are already into the business end, the closing stages.

It has been a tough one for Arsenal. A season that has never really got going. 6 wins from 22 games. I have never known it so bad.

But our road to redemption has started under Mikel Arteta, albeit slowly.

4 games played, 1 win, 2 draws, 1 defeat.

That one defeat came at home to Chelsea when Arsenal were the better team, ran out of steam and were on the negative end of a poor referring decision at 1-0 up.

Whilst the wins might not have came from Arteta’s opening games, there is plenty of room for optimism.

Arsenal have become harder to break down, players are showing a greater desire to win the ball back, and it is only a matter of time until the train is back on the right tracks.

A Champions League spot is still not out of the question. Those above us – Chelsea, Man U, Tottenham – have not exactly opened up a huge gap in our time of crisis. Like Arsenal, they are just as likely to not win for 3 or 4 games as they are to win 3 or 4 in a row.

The next 5 games are key for Arsenal, starting today with Sheffield United.

If we are to maintain our dreams of getting back into the Champions League and a return of the £75million revenue that we are missing, we have to beat the likes of Sheffield United at home.

Sheffield United have been fantastic this season.

Chris Wilder has got his team working hard for each other. Organised, not conceding many. Real workman like with no ego, no superstar individuals. They have already beaten Arsenal once this season.

But they are a team Arsenal should beat if they want to show they have improved under Arteta.

Looking beyond Sheffield United, it is then a trip to Stamford Bridge on Tuesday. This is a 6 pointer.

Had Arsenal held on to the 1-0 lead, we would only be 5 points off of 4th place. We lost and we are 11 points adrift. A 14 point gap with 14 games to go will probably be too much.

Victory for Arsenal would see the gap reduce to single figures.

Following hosting Arsenal, Chelsea face a tricky run of Leicester City (A), Man U (H) & Tottenham (H). Arsenal’s games are Burnley (A), Newcastle (H) and Everton (H).

The next 5 games could see a 7 or 8 point swing towards Arsenal and put us straight back into the race for the top 4. And it all starts today with a victory over Sheffield United.


Deloitte Money League shows just how far Arsenal have fallen

On Monday Deloitte published their Football Money League for the 23rd time:

The revenue figures show just how Arsenal have stood still in the last decade whilst other clubs have moved ahead.

On paper, the 11th highest revenue in football does not seem disastrous, but we have now moved behind Tottenham and have the 6th highest revenue in the Premier League.

TV Money is the big swinger, with Arsenal earning £78million less than Tottenham. This difference is almost all accounted for from Champions League football and shows just how damaging to the finances missing out on top 4 is. If TV money was reversed, Arsenal would have revenue £90million ahead of Tottenham.

On a side note, Daniel Levy must be worried about how he is going to pay off the stadium debt if they fall out of the top 4. They are already struggling to finance new players with Champions League football.

Arsenal are still heavily reliant on match day revenue – 25% of our income relies on gate receipts. No other club in the top 20 is as reliant on match day revenue as Arsenal.

Where Arsenal are falling behind is when it comes to commercial revenue.

£111million came in from commercial deals in 2018/19, which leaves Arsenal in 13th. The fact Spurs have overtaken Arsenal in terms of commercial revenue is worrying – especially as they have not sold naming rights to their stadium.

These figures were prior to the new Adidas deal, however it should be taken into account that some of those above us also have new deals.

Arsenal earn £75million less from commercial revenue than Liverpool. Add in a further £78million in broadcasting and it is easy to see the reason why Arsenal have fallen so far behind the European Champions. That is a combined £153million less Arsenal earn from broadcasting and commercial deals.

Liverpool are becoming the standard-bearer for a well run club.

They do not have the sugar daddy of Chelsea, PSG or Manchester City pumping in billions, yet they have created a side that is the best in the world at the moment. They have done this through pushing themselves to do better on and off the pitch. Both sides of the club working as one to become successful. They have not sat happy with what they have.

It was only a few years ago that they were scrapping around for 7th or 8th in the league. More years out of the Champions League than in. They turned it around and now are a force to be reckoned with.

Arsenal have no excuses for what is happening. It is just simply not good enough.

Vinai Venkatesham has been overseeing the commercial side of the club for nearly a decade. In that time we have seen a downward slide. We have sat still whilst other clubs have moved ahead.

That is not to blame everything on Vinai or call for his head, but Arsenal need to stop getting excited about mediocre deals.

What is clear from the Deloitte Money League is just how much work Vinai and Raul Sanllehi need to do at Arsenal to turn the ship around.

You can not build a successful football without successful finances. At the moment every team in the top 6 is generating more than Arsenal, and therefore has more to spend. Until that turns around we will struggle to return to the top 4.


For a superb analysis on the Deloitte Football Money League, read the fabulous below thread from Swiss Ramble

Nketiah staying, no one joining, all very quiet

Social media really does have a habit of making stories out of something that is not.

Yesterday a gutter journalist tweeted that Arsenal had announced they would be holding a press conference at 2:30, and commentated that this was odd as pre-game press conferences take place on Thursday’s, not Wednesday’s.

What was happening? People enquired? Who are we signing? Maybe Mikel Arteta is being sacked already? The rumour mill was spinning.

An hour or so later, a second journalist tweeted his dismay as the press conference had actually been scheduled for Wednesday since the start of the week and every journalist would have already known about it

The whole situation just highlights how people can manipulate a situation for attention.

Not much was said during the pre-game press conference. An update on injuries, Saed Kolasinac & Lucas Torreira both being assessed, Calum Chambers, Hector Bellerin and Kieran Tierney still out.

There was a little chat about transfers. I have bad news for you guys, I have nothing to say yet! Arteta answered. Can we look to much into the word “yet” at the end? Probably.

John Stones and Franck Kessie were ruled out, although in response to the later Arteta uttered No truth at all at the moment. Like saying “yet” I am sure some will read a lot into this. And that was about that.

Bigger transfer news broke this morning. And in terms of it being big, it is when you consider we have had nothing yet in January.

Eddie Nketiah is staying at the club until the end of the season.

ST ALBANS, ENGLAND – JULY 27: Eddie Nketiah of Arsenal during a training session at London Colney on July 27, 2019 in St Albans, England. (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Talk is that this is due to Pierre Emerick-Aubameyan’s red card, but with 2 games still to play in January we could have easily have kept Eddie till the end of the month. I wonder if the feeling at the club is that it is pointless him going to a Championship side and sitting on the bench again. He might as well be training with Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.

There are some that are using Nketiah staying as evidence that Lacazette could be off in January. I can not see it happening, but can see a case where the Frenchman leaves us in the summer.

My feeling is that we will not sign anyone in January, and I have no issue with that. There is no point spending big on a short term option.

It is crazy that some people still try to make a living off transfer speculation when nothing is clearly happening!

Sheffield United this weekend. I still have dreams of finishing top 4.