FOR years their lack of silverware made them the butt of a thousand jokes.
You know the ones…”what does an Arsenal fan do when they win a trophy? Turn off the PlayStation” and the like.
Getty – Contributor5 Unai Emery does not have any money to spend to buy any players this month
About as funny as a fart in a spacesuit, admittedly, but you get the point of how it was until they finally won an FA Cup or two again.
Now, though, the Gunners are something of a laughing stock again, only you won’t find too many of their own fans splitting their sides.
This time it is because Arsenal, the club Forbes rated as the sixth richest in the world only six months ago, haven’t got a pot to p*** in when it comes to a January transfer kitty.
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Getty Images – Getty5 Arsenal, owned by Stan Kroenke are the sixth richest club in the world, according to Forbes
Getty – Contributor5 Arsenal are scratching around trying to cobble cash together to land Denis Suarez
The club with an annual turnover of £427 million, with an owner whose fortune is around £7 BILLION, with the costliest season tickets in the Prem won’t be spending a penny this month.
Too far fetched for words? Not a bit of it, Unai Emery admitted as much yesterday, albeit without spitting his dummy.
When Kroenke paid £600m to buy out Alisher Usmanov and become sole owner, it didn’t all come from his own pocket.
Very little of it did, in fact. All but £50m came from a bridging loan, and he hasn’t stumped up any of his own dough for new signings.
Indeed, the Gunners spend only money generated from their own revenue, claiming they want to do in a way which respects the club’s history, values and traditions.
All very virtuous. But when you consider a lack of Champions League football has cost around £35m in each of the two years they’ve been out, in a total drop of around £40m in matchday, broadcast and commercial revenue, it doesn’t leave much.