The protest aimed squarely at Arsenal’s owners may not have dislodged those in power as we had wished.
But it may well have alerted a figurative white knight.
Spotify CEO, Daniel Ek, tweeted his ‘interest in the immediate aftermath of the protest, as thousands showed their disgust at KSE and their handling of the whole European Super League affair and their stewardship of the club.
Ek has a worth of billiions like Kroenke. But it is still dwarved by Kroenke’s entire fortune. Buying Arsenal – thought to be worth in the region of £2bn – would not only cost Ek about 90% of his entire worth, but it would leave him powerless to do what he wants.
And that is, as a Gooner of 30 years, to return our club to the top.
Arsenal have been amongst the biggest transfer spenders in recent years, but this hasn’t come from Stan’s pockets. The American has resolutely refused to take his hands from his cavernous pockets. In fact, the only monetary transactions that take place between Stan and Arsenal are his ‘Consultancy fees’ that are around £3m at a time.
While Arsenal have wheeled and dealed and taken out he equivalent of a finance deal for our biggest transfers, we have fallen down the pecking order in the all-important Deloitte Money list. This exclusive money league table takes into account all assets of a club and whittles everything down into a net worth of each club. Arsenal used to be mainstays of the top8, but now we have fallen behind the majority of our rivals – even sinking below our neighbours.
This has coincided with a slump in performance and results, which now see us struggling to stay in the top half of the Premier League table.
All of this has melded together and created a swell of negativity, from old fans and new, about the direction the club is going in. With Kroenke at the helm – who famously said that he didn’t buy into Arsenal for trophies – we have sunken farther and farther from where we should be, where years of hard work had allowed us to be.
Where does it stop? This is the desperate feeling amongst the majority of us Gooners, hence the vociferous support for both the protest, and the club that represents the rebirth of the Arsenal traditions and values we hold dear – Dial Square FC. DSFC received a huge lift in applications to become members, as this club promises that fans come first and always will.
But any owner will come in and have to lend money to buy clubs of our ilk. Leverage the value of the club and add debt to our name – and Ek would do the same. He needs outside investment to complete his proposals. What would make him better than Kreonke, who simply does nothing?
Well, it’s all about intentions.
Daniel Ek – a self-professed fan – confessing that he wants to buy Arsenal FC. It sounds too good to be true, the modern-day take on a fairytale. But can Ek defeat the evil king with just he? No! He needs a merry band of warriors by his side – Patrick Vieira, Dennis Bergkamp and Thierry Henry. Bona fide Arsenal legends, who would be a part of the Board. Football people on our Board. Arsenal people on our Board.
It sounds too good to be true, probably because it is. And yet, Ek spoke to news channels recently and let everyone know he is in it for the long haul, and doesn’t expect the Kroenke’s to simply hand over the reins.
Any fan of any club would dearly love fans – rich fans that is – and heroes of the club, to be owners and representatives of the club. Bayern Munich have that to a degree, as do Ajax.
Until King Kroenke is foiled though, this fairytale will have to wait for its happy ending.
As a former, regular respondent to your Jokman articles, I took time out from comment and stood back to observe the efforts to transition at Arsenal since Arsene Wenger’s departure. It has been a very disturbing exercise which is now culminating with the club on the brink of disaster – disaster as far as not having the pleasure of watching thrilling, free flowing football played by artistes and certainly no prospect of winning any trophies.
The process was well established before AW was encouraged to leave. However, what had become apparent then, has become even more obvious as his successors have tried to juggle with the various management combinations governing and limiting their attempts to rebuild the ‘on field’ style/format/plan into a winning formula with a playing staff that they largely inherited and were financially constrained to utilise. They were set up to fail despite their best efforts.
Throughout this entire period there has been one common denominator, one dictator, one controller. Stan Kroenke. Two aspects of Stan that are even more prominent are his complete lack of passion for Arsenal Football Club and his total lack of support, be that financial, physical or psychological.
AW, for me, made the great mistake of trying to protect Stan by misleading the Arsenal fan base with the annual fairy stories that were built around what turned out to be mythical transfer acquisitions, followed by equally nonsensical excuses as to why the targets never materialised. Even worse were the actual purchases, very few of whom will be remembered with any admiration.
The two successors to AW have manfully tried to impose themselves and their respective strategies, ultimately and frustratingly (for them) resulting in dismal failure. Disappointingly it would seem (if the media are to be believed) that Arteta has chosen to try and whip up some vision of Stan providing the club the funds necessary to regain lost ground whilst providing the ‘pot of gold’ that will enable a rebuild the team are capable of achieving former glories. Should this report prove to be true, then perhaps the manager could share with us the secret of whatever substance he’s taking so that we all have ‘rose tinted spectacles’.
Just at the moment when all seemed doom, gloom and eternal disaster along comes the figurative White Knight, a you describe him, and a glimmer of light is trying to rise above the horizon. Because of previous disappointments my feeling of hope and rescue are reluctant to activate and my sensors are telling me – “Believe it when you see it”. Deep down I have an itch that says “maybe – just maybe”
If Daniel Ek proves to be the White Knight, along with those celebrated Invincible heroes, and they do manage to wrest the reins from the grasp of stubborn Stan then hopefully the sun will shine again. At least they have the necessary pre-requisite – an undoubted deep down passion for Arsenal Football Club!
Heck (pun intended) that gives me cause to crack a bottle of Sauv. Blanc and indulge in some ‘what if’ dreaming.
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I’ve missed these. Excellently put my good fellow. I’m reluctant to hope as well but with so much negativity, it’s hard not to latch onto something.