I am confused, it’s not that hard to be when discussing religion or politics, but when it comes down to football and especially Arsenal Football Club I usually do well. I struggle with the nitty-gritty of finance, but overall I think I have a good balanced view of the club and how it is run.
So what am I confused about?
I am confused about fans’ attitude to ‘Silent Stan’, a man who has spent a fair bit of money on buying shares in the club and in the grand scheme of things has had little influence on the running of the team. As far as I can see, he has not interfered with the way Wenger runs the squad, unlike a certain ‘Russian’ down the road he has not demanded this or that be done like the said ‘Russian’ wants. He has let Arsenal Football Club run itself and surely that is what we want, an owner who takes a back seat, one who is there if push comes to shove.
Reading Twitter and a few blogs and forums you would have thought he was Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot and Simon Cowell rolled into one. Killing the club slowly and taking all the money out of the club. Apart from taking a wage that he is fully entitled to has he taken any other cash from the coffers?
What exactly has he done wrong for Arsenal?
I hear many quotes saying it’s his fault that Arsenal are in the doldrums, but why?
Has he not backed Wenger in the transfer market?
Yes Arsenal have had to buy to sell, but is that more a condition of regaining financial clarity after the move to the new ground, is he being blamed for Arsenal being broke when they moved ?
Has not his silent influence of the Arsenal marketing department been seen to work over the past six months? Two new shirt deals and a couple of other sponsorship deals and rumors of more to come. Arsenal are looking at having a marketing strategy and a wage strategy like the one at Old Trafford to help reduce the wage bill by using sponsorships in this area.
Has he not listened to fan groups who have rightly or wrongly questioned him, the board and other members of the backroom staff’s leaderships with ticketing, etc.?
The biggest bugbear I can see with fans’ attitude towards ‘Silent Stan’ is that he has not done an Abramovich. He has not come in and gone there you go have one billion pounds spend it how you like (or as ‘I like’ as it’s turned out).
Day after day I read how Arsenal are not like Bayern Munich and how Stan’s teams in American sport are not doing well. American sports clubs are run differently so it holds no comparison to English football and as for the German model, it would need a change in the set-up of the EPL for it to take effect here, which is not going to happen.
Stan probably does see Arsenal just as an investment and not a love or passion thing, but can that not be a good thing?
In a league with teams backed by unlimited funds, is running a club with sound business practices not a good idea? Should not all clubs be self-sustaining to a point using TV money, Sponsorship deals, ticket money and the selling of players to fund the clubs?
Running football clubs is not as obviously easy as some make out, look at QPR, Blackburn and Aston Villa, three clubs all run differently, but all struggling. To me that shows that how you run a club is specific to your club.
Arsenal have in my mind,since the late nineties,set out on a path that Stan has bought into and is continuing with.
It is not reliant on one man’s wealth.
It has up to this point been reliant on one man’s managerial skill, but looking to the future, the club, Wenger and Stan are trying to make it so that when one or both leave the club we will be in a strong financial position to help it survive in the world of football that we now live in.
Stan may very well leave a richer man, but if his silent running of the club allows Arsenal Football Club to be competing in this highly competitive market than is that not a good thing?
Stephen has agreed to write for us.He was “tapped up” in other words.
I would like to add that yesterday,Gary Neville said
“the best thing about the Glazers,is that they don’t interfere with the running of the club”
How odd , that seems to be exactly what many of our fans don’t want from someone who is not an owner,just a majority shareholder.