Thursday, September 18, 2014
Fox: Success on our own terms remains Arsenal aim

Fox: Success on our own terms remains Arsenal aim

Tom Fox, Arsenal’s Chief Commercial Officer, believes the Gunners can achieve success on their own financial terms but admits securing silverware is a big challenge when the likes of Manchester City and Chelsea continue to fund their operations from considerably deeper pockets.

Acknowledging that a Premier League title would help the Gunners secure more lucrative commercial deals, the American made clear that competing for players against the riches of Gulf States and oligarchs was nigh on impossible.

Manchester City, who currently sit one point behind Arsene Wenger’s side, have benefited from over $1 billion worth of investment in the last five years – securing an FA Cup and league title in the process – while Chelsea have been firing the £50 notes almost non-stop since Roman Abramovich parked his tanks in West London a decade ago.

Speaking at the 3rd Leaders Sport Network breakfast yesterday morning, Fox continued to back Arsenal’s self-sustaining model: “Winning and doing it on our terms, in a self-sustaining way, I think [would be] incredibly powerful.

“It would create a completely different environment and it would be an easier environment in some ways to do business.

“We believe that we will be successful running the football club the way we’re running it — despite a whole host of other issues, whether it’s the economy at large, whether it’s the make-up of the ownership.”

Despite smashing the club’s transfer record in the summer with the £42.5 million acquisition of Mesut Ozil, Fox also clarified that the Gunners are not set-up to make similarly bold moves on a window-by-window basis.

“Almost by necessity, we have a financial model that doesn’t allow us to go into the market every summer and buy all of the best players that are for sale.

“We are competing against oligarchs, we are competing against nation states, we are competing against clubs all across Europe that have sources of funding that are significant, that make it very difficult for us to compete.

“You can’t compete against that. We’re a football club in London and we are a global brand, but we would never try to compete against the financial resources of a country [like Qatar].

“I just don’t think that’s a very realistic thing for us to do…trying to chase those types of owners. Obviously it’s just not possible.”

There’s not much new in what Fox has said. He’s right; we still can’t compete with Qatari cash and Russian Roubles even though we’re more flush than was previously the case.

Of course, that’s where UEFA’s Financial Fair Play rules were supposed to help out…but so far Platini’s make-it-up-as-you-go-along legislation appears more impotent than a room full of stoned eunuchs.

That being said, we can still compete on the pitch because money alone doesn’t win you trophies (yeah, yeah, yeah we know about the wage/trophy correlation).

We’re more than holding our own at the top of the table right now and with an impressive squad that seems hell bent on ending the club’s trophy drought (and a bit of luck) we might just do it this year.

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71 comments

  1. If i was him id sign my name

    T
    FOX
    M

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  2. the only sam is nelson

    Chelsea’s business model = sell a player for £3m, then buy him back for £21m

    Arsenal’s business model = buy a player for £2m, sell him on for £20m

    Still, as long as Mr Fox is as cunning as, then we’ll be able to top up the moneybags with some smart commercial deals.

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  3. Didn’t Citih get negrado for just £16m if so arguably he is the best buy of the summer and for a few mil more than giroud

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    • Agreed, he’s been sensational!

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    • He has been good, can’t deny that. The £22 million for the six times Jovetic has played doesn’t look like quite such good business right now though.

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    • Lukaku on loan is also pretty good.

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      • indeed it was but as we saw with the last minute Bendtner / Ba fiasco, Chelsea was never going to loan him to us

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    • Flamini on a free was the best signing of the summer – by a country mile.

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      • Who thumbed that down?
        0 pounds for a tasmanian dust devil who will eat the children of our enemies.
        0 euros for a man who given the choice would tear his own arms off rather than wear long sleeves in the british winter, like a pussy…

        Pretty good deal

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        • Negredo for 16.

          Lovable, ours and great this season; sure. Neutrally – if I can do that – Negredo is simply younger and better.

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    • Negredo is a better striker but I’d rate Giroud slightly higher because of his all-round play. Maybe under less pressure he can reach Negredo heights.

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    • Giroud was £12M so if Negredo who was £4M more then i’d say Giroud too has done well for his price tag.

      City pay ridiculous fees £24M for Javi Garcia? and £22M for jovetic? and since they can afford it they can always take risks. afew jovetics down the line and they have Negredo.

      we just cant afford that. That’s why we have scouting missions. city i assume just watch youtube videos or wait for [player A] to be linked with a certain high profile club then they pounce.

      Oil funded cunts!

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      • It’s hard not bring up Spurs spending spree at this point. Regardless of the money they had coming in, they must’ve spent a similar (can’t be arsed to Google) amount to City this summer. £32mil for Lamela?

        In Siggurdson, Lloris and Vertonghen, it’s very possible that they made better signings in 2012, before the money came in?

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    • They did, they were organised, they knew what they wanted and got the deal wrapped up by the beginning of June. Fox’s negativity – poor little Arsenal can’t compete with a nation state – is feeble, I think, feeble, lacking in ambition and pulling the wool over our eyes. No one is asking us to compete with a nation state. What we should be moving towards competing with, however, is the best-run club in Europe – Bayern, that is.

      We alone of the big clubs in Europe have a transfer surplus. Most have a deficit, a massive one in many cases, though that isn’t a problem so long as there’s sufficient revenue from elsewhere to to sustain it – there’s no danger of Real or City or any of the super-rich doing a Leeds. Bayern, who are increasingly rich, have a zero transfer balance because all of their available resources are reinvested in players, which brings them success on the pitch, which in turn brings in revenue from sponsorship, broadcasting and so on. That’s their business model: win. Win the league, win the CL, because that generates money, which can be ploughed back into the squad, which makes you attractive to the world’s best players and generates further success.

      OK, we don’t have a sugar-daddy owner – or, rather, we do, we’ve got one with wealth closing in on that of the Mansours, but unfortunately the other owner won’t allow him any say in the club – which makes competing with City and Chelsea a very tough ask. But, unless Gazidis and Swiss Ramble have been telling lies, we had more than enough money last summer to address the most glaring weakness in our squad by buying a quality striker like Negredo or Higuain. There’s no guarantee that the best squad will win the title and the CL, but experience tells us it’s pretty damn likely. It also tells us that a needlessly thin squad – which ours is, slightly, both defensively and up front – is more vulnerable to injuries, exhaustion, lost games and demoralisation in the later stages of the season. Strength in depth is what wins stuff. If it wasn’t Southampton or Everton would have a chance of the league.

      Fox’s blathering on about nation states and our poverty is no doubt kindly meant. It’s intended to take the pressure off Wenger. But do we really think it’s good that the manager is not under any pressure to make the best of the available budget? Respect for the manager is right, trust in him is right, but this excuse-making waffle is sending out the wrong message, I think. There should be pressure on Wenger to perform. There should also be pressure on Fox himself to do still better with the sponsorship. He’s getting his own excuses in early, perhaps, and it leaves me with the anxiety that there’s a culture of non-ambition seeping into the club.

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  4. Agreed but they only got him because of Pellagrini being his former coach and the player only wanted that move…

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  5. Um, everyone seems to forget we are owned by two billionaires, so although we operate a self sustaining model, we can compete with ‘roubles’

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    • "Financial Resources of a Country"

      This was his point (from Wikipedia):

      Sheikh Mansour’s personal wealth is estimated at around £20bn plus is a member of the world’s second richest royal family, who have access to an oil fortune worth £400 billion to £1 trillion.

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    • Booooooooooooo, wrong, what happens when the Billionaires decides to get out?

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  6. I wonder how it must feel for City fans having gone through no-trophy-in-the-near-future to we’re league champions. Most will be happy, but to me it’s like entering cheat codes to complete a game, it’s no fun.

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  7. The bad news is, Manure are sinking so fast they’ll soon strike oil.

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  8. Fox said we can’t ‘buy all the best’ players available every window. Well yes, obviously. No one does. I’d take 1 world class player a window. Is he ruling that out? Clear as mud. If we can’t do that I must say I wonder what we have been doing all this for?

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    • You extrapolate a fair bit..
      he’s merely saying that we cannot compete with the national wealth of qatar.

      If Man City want to buy every player in Serie A – they probably can – Chelsea stockpile players and lend them out to stop clubs like Arsenal competing.
      He’s saying that we have to compete in this context

      I’d be happy with one Marquee signing each summer with a couple of 21 year olds and a few 16 year olds.

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  9. Big F**king Cameroonian

    I don’t care about what he says. The truth is, we have enough money to strengthen our squad and stay competitive in a long run. strengthening doesn’t mean we must splash 30M+ on every player we bring in.

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  10. Cynicism about the implementation of FFP is justified enough but it was always going to be a cumulative effect and full rules do not apply until 2015. In the meantime the squad investments clubs like City have made already will sustain them for a couple of seasons yet. For Arsenal it’s about limiting or at least inhibiting the excesses while increasing their own financial strength. FFP will help but it will be a much slower process than many would like as the effects build up over the next 5 years or so.

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    • Financial fair play will just make it easier for teams like The Arsenal and Moneybags United to hold Bolton Blackburn and Darlington in their place and ensure that these teams NEVER EVER EVER challenge for anything like Brian Clough’s Derby County and Notts Forest.
      Platini and his coterie at UEFA should be shot like rabid dogs.
      FFP will destroy football and hasten the onset of the sterile European super league.
      Hopefully Manure will drop out of champions league and become a Bolton or a Darlington in this context.

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  11. The Matic deal is a perfect example of the way these clubs are run. It’s fuckin crazy.

    Good point about Negredo, but it could easily have been Jovetic playing out of his nut with Negredo then nowhere to be seen.

    The point being, Citeh don’t give a shit about spunking money like that and a player failing, because they don’t have to.

    And that’s something we just can’t possibly afford to do.

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  12. there is a bigger joke than the way clubs spend money and that the financial fair play regulations by FIFA. After reading this I am really glad that we can afford our players from the clubs revenue but it would be exceptional if we could lower ticket prices :I don’t think that will ever happen…. not when we got 4000+ on the season ticket waiting list

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  13. I despise these 2 clubs, i really fucking hate them and their fans.

    I wish god gave me wings and a huge rectum so i would just fly over the etihad and stamford bridge and shit all over their fans!

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  14. Good talk by Fox. But we have a manager who can attract big players e.g Özil, as well as doing the biz on the pitch. I’m so sure there are strikers who would prefer Arsenal to their bluish neighbours ‘cuz of their pedigree with CF’s bar Drogba.

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  15. We could compete with those guys if Stan wanted to spend his money. Not that he should, but if he wanted to, you know… We could buy messi if he wanted to.

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    • "Financial Resources of a Country"

      And Abramovich could outbid us if he wanted to. And the Sheikh could offer the country of Spain free oil for a year if he wanted to ensure City got him.

      Fox’s point still stands: Chelsea and Man City can both outbid us for any and every player we go for if they wanted to.

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  16. What did I say!

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  17. The Artist formerly known as DangerMouse

    How much more satisfying it will be to win the league in spite of those two clubs stinking wealth. Arsenal should be every neutrals favourite. We are the David up against TWO Goliaths. If we win this Premier league against such odds it will be Arsene and Arsenals finest achievement.

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  18. Whoever said Giroud at all round game at 12M makes him a better buy when comparing him with Negredo must be a cunt. What the hell will players like Giroud be doing in clubs like mu or chelsea. He just like for 12M at arsenal

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    • Giroud is a arsenal striker.
      What would he be doing at MU or Chelsea?

      He is leading this season in Goals and assists over negredo, chelseas strikers and man u strikers?

      why is it cuntish to suggest he is better value?

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      • Negrado – 16 goals – Giroud 8, hmmm that would suggest pound for pound as a STRIKER, and goal scorer that a CF is supposed to do………………..not to mention in his FIRST season in the Premier League as opposed to Giroud in his second – that Negrado represents a lot better all round value, christ I’m a 30 year fan of Arsenal and even i’m not that rose tinted to think otherwise

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        • Yes but you do seem to hold a bit of anger tho. your fucking up my chi

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        • But your just making thos figures up?
          So you can suggest what you like with that.
          The actuals are
          Giroud has 9 Pl Goals and Negredo has 9 PL Goals
          in all comps
          Giroud has 12 and Negredo has 21 in all comps

          Discounting the carling domestic cups (as Giroud has barely played a match)
          Giroud has 12 and Negredo has 14

          A front player is to score or creat goals and in the PL Giroud has created / Score slightly more more goals than

          I mean Negredo is a great player and he’s doing well – im not arguing otherwise – but its churlish to argue his worth on some random figures that really belong in a team context.

          Would negredo produce those figures in this arsenal team – and if so would Ramsay have scored as many? Giroud works unselfishly for the team a lot more than most strikers – that is the style of play wenger wants – does pelligrini demand that from negredo? I mean Giroud carries out more defensive duties, tackles interceptions and has blocked more shots and made significantly more clearances.

          But then hey a STRIKERS job is to score goals and that is why Liverpool have won so many league titles with Collymore, Fowler, Owen, Suarez who have all scored hat fuls of goals for the mugsmashers..

          Rose tinted or not we are top of the league so our front man is doing something right.

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  19. The only Olivier is Giroud

    As The Artist who used to be named DangerMouse (or something like that ;) ) said, if we do scrap this League title by somehow drawing at Stamford Bridge and beating Citeh at the Grove and those two drop points against the Mugsmashers… it’ll surely be in the same bracket as the Invincibles. I mean hell, the defending champions isn’t even considered as our closest rivals, the team most likely to scrape into 4th will have Suarez and Sturridge to carry them AND after day1 of the season even the sp*ds worried me a little. I’m ashamed to admit to that last bit, but the odds against the “Arséne Wenger’s way” on August 14th (or whatever it was) just seemed staggering.

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  20. well, money comes and goes but class is permanent. COYG.

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  21. IMO, our football philosophy and financial prudence are attributes that we can take massive pride in and apply in reality. Arsenal is more than a club. its a way of life and i wldnt trade it for city, chelsea and manure trophy rooms combined. now i’m getting my coat.

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    • Put your coat down again. You’re absolutely right.

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    • Chatting bollocks mate. Know the history of our club. We wouldn’t be anywhere near where we are if hadn’t been for old Danny Fizman (RIP) ploughing £50 million of his own cash into the club in the mid 90’s. For me Arsenal has always and always will be the players on the pitch and the manager on the sidelines. I support Arsenal cos I’m a Holloway boy, not for some silly moral reason. The suits upstairs have rarely cared about the fans nor have they ever been particularly moral – look up Henry Norris. We saw it back when they introduced the North Bank scheme to gentrify the club, and we’re seeing it now with the above inflation ticket price rises. Sure I hate Chelsea – I’ve always hated them. They’re a scumbag club and always have been. I remember their stupid National front fans and their violent cunty hooligans, and Ken Bates penning fans with electric fences. I have no problem with City. Why should they feel ashamed. They won the lottery and they’re enjoying the ride. They are enjoying the benefits of a cash injection. We’ve enjoyed that in the past.

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  22. Important that we establish ourselves as a top 3 club alongside the oily franchises making us the most appealing club in the epl outside of those two to join. Got to admit that it was starting to feel like we were struggling to attract top quality to the club these last few lean years. Gotze and Hazard come to mind. That’s why the arrival of Ozil was such a boost, it’s reestablished our reputation as a top club which the world’s best would want to join. We have some other things going for us too. Our style of football is renowned world-wide, the egalitarian structure at the club and having a figurehead like Wenger at the helm whose mere reputation for bringing out talent in players all makes us a unique and attractive proposition. The oily clubs can’t hoover up all of the top talent.

    Really hope we sign Draxler as being reported. Creative midfield is one position in which there seems to be a global surplus which I guess is why we’re so well stocked up ourselves in that area, but there’s nowhere near as much an abundance of strikers. That’s why it’s going to take some ingenuity on Wenger’s part to find us a top-class striker. Reconverting a midfielder seems our best bet and some decent sources are saying that’s the plan for Draxler. Aside from that, any major signing we make will further boost our credentials and reputation, not to mention the improvement on the pitch too.

    Just to add, if we win the league this year then I think a sixty-foot solid gold statue of Wenger should be erected outside of the Emirates. A Colossus of Rhodes job. Forever casting it’s shadow over White Hart Lane.

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  23. theopants superstar

    His comments would be more creditable if we didn’t have two Billionaires of our own, one of which is the richest man in the UK. Of course he can’t say what we all know: the real difference being that City and Chelsea’s owners are willing to invest their own money into their clubs, whereas ours aren’t!!

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    • Usmanov would invest in the squad and with 18bn and rising, no. 25 in the world and closing in on the Mansours, he could afford to without noticing the difference. Kroenke is poor, as these things go (personal wealth of around of around 2-3bn), which isn’t his fault and it would be unkind to hold it against him. Shame he won’t cooperate with Usmanov, though. Also exceedingly odd, seeing as he only bought us for what he calls ‘the revenues’ which would increase massively if Usmanov could put City-style money into the team and was able to contribute to our sponsorship revenue.

      Still, at least he hasn’t removed 700m from our coffers, but I’d sleep easier if he wasn’t a professed admirer of the Glazers and hadn’t refused to give the AST an undertaking that he won’t at some point. I’d also sleep easier if I knew how he’d financed his purchase of us.

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  24. Reconverting……im so confused? What can this mean……..convert then convert back?? : /

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  25. U can’t just compare Giroud as a typical striker. He was bought with a purpose in mind and I would say he is surpassing expectations. I feel that just as how Spain has played with no strikers, using one of the midfielders as a withdrawn striker, Wenger is using Giroud as a striker playing as an advanced midfielder.

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  26. Tim Stillman wrote a nice piece about tradition a while back. I don’t know why we rush to claim the moral high ground, what’s the need? Man City spent a ridiculous amount to win two trophies, and Chelsea have been bankrolled for a decade. Incidentally, in my opinion, Chelsea are a more distasteful transfer operator than man city.
    Putting the relative wealth to one side, and the wonderful signing of Ozil as well aside, let’s not forget that our transfer window activity was pretty poorly done this year, and enough has been written on this blog about it as well. Having this debate about Negredo seems like petty revisionism. Ultimately, we are top at present, and hopefully will be there at the end of the season.
    Sure, we might have less money, but is it really true that every time we go out to buy a player, man city and chelsea are also looking at him (of course, Mata, Hazard… see my point about the assholes at Chelsea above, and add Willian to that list, although our enemy were in for him)? Were they in for Higuain, or did we botch that transfer?
    Is Arsenal decisive in the transfer market? That seems a more relevant question.
    And forget about all the spin these management types (even though they are our management types) put out. People with MBAs just make me queasy.

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  27. non-flying dutchman

    more impotent than a room full of stoned eunuchs – classic

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