Arsenal were once considered by some to be the best team in the world. They had a reputation for playing beautiful football, creating world class players and competing for all types of trophies.
During the 2003/04 season Arsenal football club went the whole season without losing one match. Then further went on to make it 49 games unbeaten.
This is of course a remarkable achievement that has never been done before in the Premier League. At this point Arsenal were considered by many to be the best team on the planet or at least in the top three.
Then, in the following season Arsenal beat Manchester United in the final of the FA Cup to secure what would be, their last trophy for nine years to come. So what happened? Same manager, mostly same team, same board? Same... stadium?
In 2006 Arsenal moved from Highbury, down the road to their new home, the Emirates Stadium. This remarkable stadium held over 60,000 people when full, had a magnificent playing surface, and truly looked fabulous.
Two things they did manage to recreate in the new stadium was the perfect pitch and the beautiful style of football. However the trophy winning and success seemed to remain half a mile up the road, at Highbury. So what happened...
The Emirates Stadium costed a mind boggling £390,000,000. For this you could buy four Lionel Messis! Obviously this was going to come at a price, not just in money but also in other areas. This has been clear in the fact that Arsenal have not won any trophies since their move to the new stadium.
Arsene Wenger has a masters in higher economics so is very aware of the risks and benefits of a purchase and financial move of this magnitude.
He has tried to repair the financial damage done to the club and, to be fair to him and the Arsenal board, has achieved. Every Barclays Premier League season the Emirates Stadium gets an estimated £70,000,000 in ticket sales. Arsenal have been at the Emirates Stadium for about eight years so this would mean £560,000,000 in ticket sales income alone. However, not all this money goes directly into Arsenals budget.
Furthermore, Wenger bought 10 players including Cesc Fabregas, Robin Van Persie and Emmanuel Adebayor for 39.5 million euros and then sold all ten of those players later on for a total of 246 million euros.
This leaves a profit of 206.5 million euros. Admittedly Arsenal fans have not enjoyed this process as their reaction to Van Persie recently suggests.
Even with this astonishingly expensive stadium and large amount of top goal scorers and captains sold, Arsenal have still managed to maintain a top four finish and perform well in the Champions League year in, year out.
It has to be said that Arsenal's consistency through the difficult years has been admirable, and the transition from Highbury to the Emirates Stadium is evidently an architectural and financial masterpiece.
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