Arsenal announce £45.5m black hole that should kickstart Stan Kroenke transfer splurge

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Arsenal’s financial position for last season has laid bare the need to invest in the club in the January transfer window to ensure they secure Champions League football next year. The Gunners were out of Europe for the first time in 25 years last season and it had an impact on the club’s finances.

Arsenal have announced that they ran at a loss of £45.5million last season while also reducing their wage bill from £244m to £212m. That wage bill is likely to come down even further for this current financial year after both Hector Bellerin and Alexandre Lacazette left the club as free agents while the likes of Bernd Leno, Lucas Torreira and Matteo Guendouzi were also sold on.

Arsenal have explained that the main reason for the club’s £45.5m loss in last year’s finances was all down to them not playing European football. A statement read: “The 2021/22 season was the first for 25 years in which the men’s first-team had failed to qualify for Uefa European competition.

“The loss of the revenue associated with Uefa football was the principal contributory factor in terms of the overall result for the year. The very welcome return of supporters to our home matches, as the restrictions associated with the Covid pandemic were eased, meant that the result for the year was considerably improved against the prior period, which had been adversely impacted by £85 million of Covid attributable losses.”

The club are back in Europe this season, although the Champions League is where the big prize money is on offer. With Arsenal sitting top of the table heading into Christmas, there will be plenty of expectation on Mikel Arteta finishing inside the top four.

They’re currently 11 points ahead of Manchester United in fifth, but there is still more than half the season left to play. Chelsea and Liverpool will also be expected to have much better success after the season resumes later this month.

And Arsenal will soon come under pressure from Manchester City at the top of the table. The January window presents an opportunity to help improve Arteta’s squad and increase their chances of finishing inside the top four.

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Arteta has already hinted that he expects money to be made available to him in the new year. But Arsenal’s finances highlight the need for the Emirates outfit to secure Champions League football next year to take them to the next level.

As a comparison, City announced record profits for the last financial year worth £41.7m as well as an incredible revenue of £613m. Liverpool haven’t announced their financial results for last year, but are expected to break the £600m barrier also.

That’s the level Arsenal need to get to in order to challenge regularly at the top of the table, and spending big in January will only help their cause.



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