Arsenal’s majority shareholder was in attendance earlier for the annual Arsenal General Meeting. Unfortunately, I was not there so I have no idea what was said. All I can provide you are some quotes said by Silent Stan. They are provided by Arsenal.com:
“It is a pleasure to be here. This is my sixth AGM and it is great to be back. I appreciate people re-electing me to the board. Well, it was close to unanimous!
“Anyway, it is great to be here and I would tell you we are pleased with the progress of the Club and that is made up of a lot of things, most importantly on the pitch.
“None of us up here [on the board], fans, players, or Arsène [Wenger] are happy until we have won championships and trophies. We have said that over and over again and are committed to that.
“Also, when you try to build towards that, it is very important for the Club to be successful commercially, and we are very pleased with the progress we have made in that area.
“We have come a long way, with the debts of the Club being paid down, the commercial revenues are increasing in a nice way. Certainly you guys are aware of the Emirates deal.
“We have more [deals] coming and are confident. However, nothing works unless we have success on the pitch.
“The reason we got interested in Arsenal [after years of approaches from other teams] was… the tradition, the image and the success of the Club and that to me has been established by none other than our manager.
“In our opinion, with the values he stood for and the things that we value in sport, they were evidenced through him and through this club. So we are very pleased to be here and I couldn’t be more honoured to introduce our manager Arsène Wenger.”
From his words, he definitely sounds more like a businessman than a football fan to me. That isn’t bad on all aspects as you feel that his main goal is trying to get the club to get money through commercial deals and ultimately to make money. Making money transcribes to being able to sign players like Ozil so all in all, it is important to have someone who understands the business side of it. Plus, it seems like we are pretty secure in finances with him in charge, another positive.
There are many down sides to having a business owner. First off, they aren’t going to push to sign players that will make the team better. For example, Abramovich signed Shevchenko directly. Mourinho didn’t want him, Chelsea didn’t want him, Abramovich wanted him, so he got him. You aren’t going to see Kroenke wanting Rooney badly enough to get money from his own pocket to sign him. Usmanov on the other hand will do that and that is why many Arsenal fans, including myself, would love to see Usmanov on the board. He has a football heart and a gigantic wallet. What more can you ask for?
There has been talk of Wenger getting set to sign a new contract as well, which will make Arsenal fans happy. Oh how the times have changed in two months. We all remember what happened after that Aston Villa game. I don’t want to say that the reason we have been doing so well since then is entirely down to Ozil’s arrival, but it has had a very big, positive effect. He has given players and fans belief that we are competitive and good enough to win the title, and that is so important in having a side win the Premier League. You have to give so much credit to Wenger though, because without him, none of this would have been possible.
Arsenal plays Norwich on Saturday, full match preview tomorrow. COYG