Until the time that the Financial Statements for the last year are published, we had better be used to hearing from David Dein about his vision for Arsenal Football Club. It will be one based on the future, as opposed to the past and present as Dein knows that is where his arguments are going to be falling flat.
Yesterday’s reports contained nothing new yet should not be dismissed as delusional, more ‘spun’ from his point of view. In that respect, the stories will be presented as visionary whilst the Board will be viewed as reactionary, responding to him all of the time. They have no reason to be on the offensive, that will come with the Results. Dein however, has to try to build up as much steam as possible, garnering small pockets of support amongst the shareholders, trying to build as large a base in the support as he can muster. It is not a ‘short game’; he is prepared for the long haul, attention given will be gratefully received. No-one is in any doubt that a takeover bid will be made, the question is when.
In terms of what he said and how he presented himself, the latter has no change from the previous report. Time allows review of the content and in what he says, I do not think Dein is being untruthful, merely skewing events to suit himself. In the Sky Sports News report, he says
When I left in April I think his future was very much in the balance, in fact he said to me at the time he wasn’t sure he wanted to stay on. We had a chat and I thought it was important that he should stay on for the future of the club.
There is nothing untoward in what he says there. You can dispute his version of events all you want but what he says ties in with comments Wenger ( a nice piece on the man here and an extract from The Arsenal Opus here – thanks Louisa) himself made during the summer, waiting to see whether or not he was able to take this generation of players forward. When Dein made the Red and White announcement, I said at the time he needed to be careful about the manner in which his PR was handled. It strikes me that he is not controlling, for want of a better word, the output and the manner it is portrayed. He has certainly toned down the approach from last weekend.
In terms of Dein being involved again at the Club, I do not have a real problem with that. I have a major issue with those who back him and am uncomfortable with their past and manner of achieving their aims. As my mum used to say, “Your friend is alright but I don’t like the crowd he runs with‘. The current Board have not done anything wrong and I subscribe to the view that Keith Edelman presented,
Philosophically, I don’t agree with the logic of having a very wealthy person fund the club. We have a budget to give Arsene and this year he didn’t spend it. On the basis that we didn’t spend all our cash and looking at the quality and strength of squad, logically, I would say there isn’t the need for a wealthy individual. People have to understand that our position as the board is to be in charge of the team long term, and over 10 years a club can only invest what they can afford alongside their business plan. There is an idea that someone can come in and put money in for three, four, five years but after that, the club have to live on from the base financial strength that they have.
Organic growth if achievable is more sustainable than a short burst of investment. There will be comparisons drawn with Manchester United and a report commissioned by their supporters trust suggesting that they have £100m interest each year to fund. That headline grabbing figure is misleading as it includes £24m of Capitalised Interest payments. What needs to be borne in mind is that United can afford it currently with their Financial Reports expected to show a healthy £90m profit
after before (thanks hackajack) interest. Whether that is true or not will be seen upon publication. The information will have to wait until the Report is filed at Companies House, unless of course a copy is leaked to the media.
Onto the playing side of things which is a happier hunting ground to be on. Gilberto Silva puts the boot into Tottenham ahead of next week’s clash. In the News of the World, he comments,
I am not worried about Jol’s situation. That’s Tottenham’s problem and it’s logical that we want to make Tottenham suffer more…I have watched them this season and they are not playing at the same level as in the past. I notice errors in defence, less control in midfield and little success in attack. And it is normal that the club will be surrounded by tension because Spurs have won only one of their five matches.
As long as it goes to one of their six matches, I am not bothered by Tottenham’s problems. Reports suggest that the Brazilian will be the subject of a £10m bid from Valencia in the January Window which were it to be true would be unwelcome but a head-turning number if Arsene was minded to sell him. I am not sure if he will at that time, more likely he will depart in the summer – if he goes at all – should Diarra, Flaminin, Diaby or Song prove up to the task of replacing him.
I have not read of any injuries to the squad yesterday which is good. It was better for Eduardo and Rosicky who both scored for Croatia and the Czech Republic respectively.