Usmanov wants answers at the AGM

It’s the day of the Arsenal Annual General Meeting.. The day when shareholders and other interested parties get to ask questions of the owner, board of directors and manager.  Whether any of those questions is rewarded with a full and frank answer is open to doubt.

It was reported in the press yesterday that Alisher Usmanov, Arsenal’s second largest shareholder, has written to Stan Kroenke seeking a detailed explanation why, for the second year running, Arsenal have paid a sum of £3 million to Kroenke Sports and Entertainment.  According to Arsenal Chairman Sir Chips Keswick last year’s payment was for “the wide range of services” provided by KSE.

Another item to be brought up is a request for an independent review of the club’s transfer strategy following the failure to sign any out-field players during the last transfer window.

There will, no doubt be questions asked about the size of the club’s wage bill, how much money there is in the transfer kitty and whether the price of match day tickets is likely to be reduced in view of the greatly enlarged sums pouring into the Club’s coffers from both television deals and sponsorship.

I’m sure AAers will have other questions that they would like to put forward,  Why not list them in your comments below.  You never know someone attending the AGM may just read them and may just put one to the hierarchy.

Written by Norfolk Gooner


153 Responses to Usmanov wants answers at the AGM

  1. RC78 says:

    I would add a question about:

    – Our Physical department given the amount of injuries we sustain;
    – our Academy;
    – our talent scouting;
    – our current squad strucutre;
    – our ability to bring in former players to the coaching staff;
    – Arsene’s succession

  2. Serekara says:

    What is the plan(s) of AFC for its African fans. Is there any plan to have a pre-season game(s) played in Africa?

  3. Delford Magaya says:

    What we need from Arsenal is a winning team and add more two players. We need a defensive midfielder in case Coquelin get injured and a top striker is needed urgently. those are the two things Arsenal should consider.

  4. Sulphur Bliss says:

    Answers are needed to the current situation with Arsenal?

  5. Peaches/Rasp, e mail sent to arsenal nuts. Urgent.

  6. Dick Swiveller says:

    The £3m payment is certainly worrying but I would imagine any questions about recruitement could be succinctly answered by just putting a Walcott cardboard cutout nearby, considering that most of the panty wetting was over not having a striker who could provide competition for Giroud, may be a little too subtle for some of the journalists,but a few might get it.

  7. Apologies, apologies, apologies seems we’ve jumped the gun, that’ll teach me to read my emails when I’m out 😦

    Sorry to Steve for publishing over his post.

    I’m sure there’ll be a healthy discussion though.

  8. There’s plenty of time to get our questions in, the AGM is not until tomorrow.

    My first sentence caused the problem.

    Sorry everyone.

  9. RA says:

    What a bully you are Norfolk, and Steve is such a nice guy too! 🙂

    Not sure how you know Usmanov is the second largest shareholder as he has apparently been on a veggies only diet for 6 months.

    The £3m payment for services rendered is such a tiny petty cash item that I have no idea why it causes so much judicious harrumphing.

    If Kroenke wanted to he would be legally and morally entitled to vote for many more millions of pounds of share dividends to reflect the club’s successful financial year, and to give a return on his billion pounds sterling investment, too.

    It comes into the ‘what can we moan about now’ category – not that I am suggesting that is what you are doing – obviously! 😀

  10. RA says:

    There is no problem with anticipating the date of the AGM, Norfolk – hopefully when Crystals comes on he will tell us this evening what happened tomorrow – so to speak. 😀

  11. emmanuel okudhuru says:

    Kroenke don’t have anything to offer arsenal let him leaved the club,usmanov the right Man for gunners let him rule

  12. Whatever they discuss all we know is our Arsene is our Joy, we can’t stop loving him , Let the Answers be YES’Arsene4ever.

  13. Big Raddy says:

    I would like to know why the food concession at AFC is given to a company who supply dreadful and over-priced shite.

    Problem is that the people who decide eat in the Arsenal WM restaurant and have no idea how awful is the fare on offer

  14. Outcast says:

    Portrait of a genius: Dennis Bergkamp

    Date published: Wednesday 14th October 2015 7:44

    Footballers become defined by a few brief moments. As our brains struggle to retain the sheer volume of football data we are continuously absorbing, it becomes inevitable that even the greatest should be remembered (but not reduced) to a few seconds, sometimes spread over decades. Gordon Banks is the save from Pele, Cristiano Ronaldo the strutted celebration, Bobby Moore held aloft by his England team-mates.

    With Dennis Bergkamp, there could only be two moments. The first is his goal against Argentina in the 1998 World Cup quarter-final, the second his flick around Nikos Dabizas against Newcastle in March 2002. Both displayed the technical ability and awareness present only in an elite few in every generation. Both made very good players look like footballing fools. Both were carried out with an insouciance that masked the hard work and commitment at their root.

    At his best, Bergkamp boasted a rare ability shared only by the game’s best players – the capacity to slow down the game around him. It was not mythical, either. The sense that Bergkamp had more time on the ball to produce moments of the sublime is not a trick of the mind, more an indication of his skill. Bergkamp’s touch and awareness combined to afford him an extra half-second ahead of almost every opponent. His technique exploited that time to the maximum. Zinedine Zidane was the master of this art.

    In a sport increasingly obsessed by records and milestones, Bergkamp sticks out as one of the most artistic players in recent memory. You would pay to watch him, not necessarily to see him score or assist a goal, but just to watch him play. Like Eric Cantona before him, this was football of feelings, not figures.

    Bergkamp was one of the most technically gifted players of the Premier League era. At a time when foreigners in English football still had an air of mystery, this was like something from another world. His first touch deserves its own wing in a hall of fame. Paul Gascoigne was arguably England’s finest touch player of the 20th century, but here was a player with the abilities of a maverick and without the ‘but’. The Dutchman’s fear of flying was his only flaw.

    Ian Wright tells an anecdote of Bergkamp’s first touch, reminiscing about a goal he scored against Tottenham in his first season in England. “It was one touch, one touch! We’re talking about a ball that has just travelled 40 yards in the air and he’s killed it dead,” Wright said. “I knew that if I get the ball over in his general direction there’s a chance he’ll do something I haven’t even thought of.” Arsenal’s second-highest goalscorer of all time, reduced to wide-eyed fan.

    It almost goes without saying that Bergkamp possessed immense trickery and flair, but his was an elevated type of skill. Modern (and largely social) media has promoted tricks and skills into their own sport, ‘tekkers’ worthy of praise in isolation. Football freestyling is now a thing.

    We assume that Dennis does not approve. For him, skills were not affectations or accessories, but a vital part of the game. A trick was utilised, not performed, used not for its own end but simply to help his team succeed.

    Take that Newcastle goal, for example. “I thought the ball was a little too much behind me so I had to turn to control it,” Bergkamp said. “The quickest way to turn the ball was going that way. It looked a bit special or strange or nice but for me it was the quickest way to the goal. The finish was about just trying to get it past the goalkeeper in such a way he cannot reach it.”

    The impudence and brilliance of the goal is played down to an almost parodical level. Efficiency has rarely been so sexy.

    Yet the focus on Bergkamp’s technical ability overshadows his greatest attribute: commitment. At a time when foreign imports were (sometimes fairly) accused of clambering aboard the Premier League bus for the money and a last hurrah, Bergkamp demonstrated the total determination that would ensure his natural ability was maximised.

    If Bergkamp was one part artist, he was at least another part fighter, a drive to succeed described perfectly by Thierry Henry. “Everything had to be perfect, even in training. Everything at one hundred per cent. He’s a very funny guy but when he was working there was no joking.” Bergkamp required aggression to assimilate into an English game which was still stylistically similar to the old First Division. You needed to be physical to succeed.

    It is this total commitment which saw Bergkamp thrive in England. The Dutchman’s Arsenal career was born under Bruce Rioch, but he developed under Arsene Wenger.

    The Dutch have a word, liefhebber, which Bergkamp uses in his book Stillness and Speed. It translates as ‘love-haver’, and he utilises it purposefully to describe his dedication to the game. This is a player happy to treat football as religion, to sacrifice his time and total effort for the cause. He is football’s equivalent to a Zen monk living in a cave for six years. “Behind every kick of the ball there has to be a thought,” is one of Bergkamp’s more famous quotes. Wenger is a staunch believer in this philosophy.

    “I believe Dennis was one of those who had such a high idea of the game that he wanted that to be above everything,” Wenger says. It was as if Bergkamp wanted to improve not to make himself better (and certainly not richer), but to improve the game as a whole through his performances, even if only by a small margin. On a more micro level, he was the ultimate team player, lacking in all selfishness and ego. This was about football and Arsenal, not individual accolades.

    For Bergkamp, this commitment is the most vital part of excellence. The first chapter of his autobiography is entitled ‘The Wall’, where he details his infatuation with the detail. “Most of the time I was by myself, just kicking the ball against the wall, seeing how it bounces, how it comes back, just controlling it,” Bergkamp says of his childhood years.

    “I was just very intrigued by how the ball moves, how the spin worked, what you could do with spin,” Bergkamp concludes. He claims not to be a football obsessive, but one thinks he doth protest too much. Among students of the game, Dennis is the grandmaster.

    As modern football has become business, difference has been suffocated. Managers prefer reliability over distinction. To be enigmatic is now steeped in negative connotation, synonymous with being undependable and erratic. You control the controllables, and shun the non-compliant. Football’s mavericks are an endangered species.

    Bergkamp showed that there is a third way, that enigma and dependability need not be mutually exclusive. He was a mass of contradictions: passion and grace, calmness and aggression, stillness and speed. Only the best can manage such potential imbalance and yet channel it in the perfect way; Bergkamp was indeed one of the best.

    Daniel Storey

  15. Redders, it’s true that Alisher is the second largest shareholder but I didn’t want to be the first to say that he’s the largest holder of shares. 😀

    I suppose the miniscule sum of £3 miilion a year is in reality peanuts, but there aren’t that many sticks to beat the BoD with at the moment….Thanks largely to the excellent form of your favourite central striker Theo Walcott.

  16. RA says:

    Wow, that is a Post sized comment and a half, and at first I thought it was an eloquent refugee from total Arsenal’s Bergampesque blog – but it has the stamp on GN5 writ large.

    Anyhoo – a terrific read, and if it is you GN5 – a welcome return. 😀

  17. RA says:

    Yummy yum, NG, I am already salivating over the return of our fave player and CF, Theo, this coming week-end. 😀

  18. GunnerN5 says:


    Compliments of Daniel Storey of Football365.

  19. RA says:

    Yay, it is the doyen of the stats and history Posts – and Daniel Storey! 😀

  20. RA says:

    In case anyone has overlooked Steve’s excellent Post, here is my retort to the puns he has suffered with his angling for luck. 😀

    RA says:
    October 14, 2015 at 4:47 pm

    I am a little hard of herring and don’t always realise this must be the finnacle of AA wit.

    Still your Post was stuffed to the gills with class, and I am sure it will reel these guys in and have them hooked.

    If I can help deal with Raddy, Chas, Rasp and co – let minnow.

    In the meantime I have haddock enough of this. 😀

  21. Oh Cod almighty, Upon my sole, eel go on like this ’til he falls of his perch.

    In the words of Vera Lynn’s war time song….whale meat again……

  22. Big Raddy says:

    RA. Steve’s post was brill, even Rasp thought so and as everyone knows Rasp is a Koi-nnoisseur

  23. RA says:

    Yes Gods, what have you done, Steve?? 🙂

    I find myself floundering when it comes to the the puns of these guys scaling the heights, but if it gets your Post into the swim, I suppose it cod-n’t be batter.

    You might think their jokes would wear a bit fin, but I assure you there is nothing fishy going on. 🙂 At least this will give you the time to mullet over.

    That said – the whole subject is making me feel a bit eel, and has given me a haddock.

  24. The Cockie Monster says:

    This is more interesting to ask questions too and more up to date than Norfolks tomorrow talk !. 🙂

    1) Chavs zero debt !, but if they have a £984M interest free loan from their owner what about paying the capital off, surely that is still a debt even if it is interest free !

    2) Other than Manshafter Std, there is not a great difference between Us , Mansour City, Chavs in revenue…..If Kroenke had not taken his £3M we could have paid higher wages than both Chavs and Mansour City !

    3) We have a bigger profit than the lesser two, a bigger Revenue than Chavs ( #The Chavs figures were from 2013/14# ) and a less % of Wage/Rev` ratio than the Chavs .

    If correct, them figures make decent reading`s to a layman like me and begs the question …….who says we cant compete with them ?………………………………………unless this is all pre-FFP downfall………….then ignore this post and carry on eating your evening tea and expect more TW`s of prudence !. 🙂

  25. RA says:

    Blimey, a cockiecountant – and talks the same bollix as the rest of us!! 😀

  26. fred says:

    1.The Age of the board members and their interest in AFC as a football club visa vie them just sitting there pretty looking at their bank account every season.
    2. Wenger’s continued suitability for the manager position when all teams are building and becoming stronger yet his is stagnant if not regressing.
    3.How & why Goroud was given a new improved contract way be4 his contract yet players like Van Passie Fabrigas were left to play upto the last year of their contracts.

  27. The Cockie Monster says:

    As you know Redders an anagram of accountant is …..A Cant Count and more interestingly to Micky….. C*nt on a Cat !. 😀

  28. The Cockie Monster says:

    Good news lads and possibly Eddie !……………..the days of straining and chaffing are over !

  29. The Cockie Monster says:

  30. stevepalmer1 says:

    Evening all, seems i have missed a bit today, Never worry about dumping one of mine, Breaking news is always what should be printed. Nice one NG,But thanks for some of your comments made me chuckle.

    AGM’s does not mean a great deal to me as i never feel anything worth knowing comes out at these functions. Questions are asked, usually to embarrass, and lies seem to spill out,

    £3 mill is a drop in the ocean to a club like Arsenal just waved away, but to a guy like me an absolute fortune, that amount would change my way of life until i died, bet its not enough to buy a half decent footballer.

    Usmanov may well ask about the amount, but he is only stiring, he spends more than that to fill his fleet up.

    All supporters are really worried about is winning the league, mo

  31. The Cockie Monster says:

    Up The Arsenal !

    The most used instrument at London Colney`s treatment room !……..I can see a pattern emerging that could provide answers to why we have so many injuries !.

  32. stevepalmer1 says:

    Sorry pressed a button somewhere and it posted. Forget the last sentence ,

  33. The Cockie Monster says:

    Remember AA men !…….when it used to be good to have a wife !. hahaha

  34. mickydidit89 says:

    Thanks Steve and NG
    Not around to join but both great reads

  35. Gööner In Exile says:

    Well done all for keeping the blog alive during the interlull, I am afraid I have been far too busy working to consider Arsenal.

    In terms of a question for AGM:

    “Why are the club so bad at getting positive PR in to the greater domain and so poor at releasing bad PR?”

    The most recent accounts were announced the day before Chavs, and that allowed headlines about £200m cash in the bank and not a single bit of explanation of the numbers….not that necessarily the media would print them but at least you would have a chance of getting your message out.

    The good PR….I only found out the other day that the club is funding a discount in away tickets. Yeah I know….how many found apart from Chas knew that?

    “Arsenal’s travelling supporters will receive a £4.00 discount on every away Premier League match ticket purchased during the 2015/16 season.

    The subsidy is intended to benefit those supporters who travel away from home most regularly, and amounts to a potential saving of £76 across the year.

    It will be the third season in a row that away fans’ dedication on the road has been recognised in this way. A £2.50 per match discount was made available to travelling supporters in 2013/14 and 2014/15.

    We are due to receive an allocation of 2800 tickets for this fixture.”

    Some would probably say £4 is not a big saving, well considering tickets for WBA are now £39 that is in fact a 10% saving for our most loyal fans.

  36. The Cockie Monster says:

    Maybe some cynics would say…….. being the most expensive club to watch, the £4 saving is the least AFC could do .

  37. Gööner In Exile says:

    Oooooh BBC price of football has been announced, so before you get set to lambast the club for the “highest prices” in the league, and the highest season tickets blah blah blah.

    A few facts you need to consider before focussing on the headline information:

    Season ticket price is cheaper than Tottenham and Chavs once you remove cup credits (7 games….so the Arsenal price is for 26 games)
    Cheapest ST
    Arsenal £741
    Tottenham £765
    Chavs £750

    Expensive ST
    Arsenal £1471
    Tottenham £1895
    Chavs £1250

    Cheapest Matchday ticket
    Arsenal £27
    Tottenham £32
    Chav £52

    Expensive Matchday ticket
    Arsenal £97
    Tottenham £81
    Chav £87

    Most popular price paid
    Arsenal £31-£40
    Tottenham £41-£50
    Chavs £51-£60

    Guess what’s the average popular price for everyone else in the Premier League….that’s right £31-£40

    Apparently the popular price is the average price point for the fans.

  38. Gööner In Exile says:

    Sorry Cockie just debunked the most expensive lazy journalism.

  39. LB says:

    That is a really good explanation GIE, and easy enough for us non accountants to understand.

  40. chas says:

    I feel a bit guilty now for not sharing the ticket discount on away tickets!
    We tend to book by phone as it’s seems so much easier than the online system and you actually get to speak to a real person. The booking fee for telephone bookings is £1.85 per ticket, so when the discount was £2.50, it didn’t really feel like you were getting anything.
    I can’t say I’ve noticed the £4 discount, but then it always seems to me that either want to pay (or can afford to pay) to go or you don’t regardless of price.

    Talking of ticket prices, I found this interesting (the last line of which says, “A recent study found the average price of a ticket in England’s top flight is £54, while the cost of a ticket in Germany is just £23”).

    Let’s hope we score in the first 5 minutes. 🙂

  41. chas says:

    I feel a bit guilty now for not sharing the ticket discount on away tickets!
    We tend to book by phone as it’s seems so much easier than the online system and you actually get to speak to a real person. The booking fee for telephone bookings is £1.85 per ticket, so when the discount was £2.50, it didn’t really feel like you were getting anything.
    I can’t say I’ve noticed the £4 discount, but then it always seems to me that either want to pay (or can afford to pay) to go or you don’t regardless of price.

    Talking of ticket prices, I found this interesting (the last line of which says, “A recent study found the average price of a ticket in England’s top flight is £54, while the cost of a ticket in Germany is just £23”).

    Let’s hope we score in the first 5 minutes. 🙂

  42. chas says:

  43. chas says:

    Ant and mine’s tickets for Sheff Wed have arrived. 🙂
    Row 12 in block WU4.
    Hope there’s a goal at our end!

  44. oh dear…. it was all a bit fishy on here yesterday. Peaches got well kippered and wanted to be in another plaice. Cod have been a lotte worse, and the sole positive was some of the excellent comments. It was all a bit of a red herring…. halibut was the moray of the story? A bad day of fishing is still better than a good day at work.

  45. Oh and the biggest catch of the day goes to GunnerN5…. what a whopper 🙂

  46. chas says:

    News Update on Arsenal petitions……………………….

    The ‘Prevent Mike Dean from refereeing another Arsenal game’ petition stands at 106,181 signatures.

    The ‘Now is the time for change, do the right thing Arsene Wenger and GO!’ petition stands at 1,266 signatures.

  47. chas says:

    Jeez, no-one would fancy hooking a lotte, would they?

  48. That was a Cat video 🙂

  49. So Peaches….. is the AGM today???

  50. chas says:

    I was going to post a couple of things on yours this morning which aren’t suitable for on here, but I can’t bear to look at that Eduardo photo again – once was more than enough. 😦

  51. mickydidit89 says:


    Ticket pricing

    Those higher/lower prices are great, but they don’t include premium seating ie about 9,000 seats so averages are misleading

    Interestingly however, whenever matchday revenues are announced, they are included

    Club and box level bring in nearly 50% of matchday revenue

    The only change I’d make is to get North Bank Lower standing. Half price tickets, double the number. Effect zero

  52. I suppose Alex Salmond would have been interested in yesterdays post. Or Cod Stewart and and the Small Plaices.

  53. chas says:

    Does anyone actually believe that Man City’s wage bill is the same as ours?
    Surely it’s all smoke and mirrors accountancy tricks?
    Don’t they as a club sponsors themselves, in effect. They made a profit, my arse.

  54. chas says:

  55. Just ignore it chas and post…. I suppose your post at 6:40am was a poor attempt at smut…. plastic smut 🙂

  56. chas says:

    No smut intended at 6.40am – just a poor attempt

  57. chas says:

    I can’t ignore it, it’s right where the comments link is.
    I’m ultra squeamish with regard to those type of injuries and never, ever look at photos or videos of them by choice.
    I didn’t even read your blog when I saw that photo!

  58. chas says:

    I suppose if you did include the premium seating, the averages would be even more misleading?

  59. The seat price is how much?

  60. mickydidit89 says:

    Err, well yes and no. It would reflect the actual meaning of the word average, but I just reckon its worth a footnote as they do represent a fifth of attendance

    Not trying to be difficult or even make a point, just accurate

  61. mickydidit89 says:

    Bloody love Big Ron

  62. chas says:

    Fair enough.
    Personally, I don’t really count the corporate noose, at all, for anything since most of them aren’t in their seats for half of the game and most probably didn’t pay for their seat either.
    It’s vital for the Club’s accounts, though.

  63. chas says:

    Is that Whiteside and Dennis Irwin alongside Big Ron?

  64. chas says:

    Ah, my earlier comment in moderation has been released.
    Sorry for the apparent duplication.

  65. dennis kimathi says:

    The need for transparency is paramount.

  66. Gööner In Exile says:

    Micky if we are excluding the noose why don’t we exclude the £97’ers after al they amount to two blocks opposite the Directors Box, or half way line, front of the upper tier, best seats in the house, and are included because it’s judged to be a “normal seat”.

    Chas from memory the reason City got hit with FFP fines was because some of their wages and costs of running the club were gives off to a subsidiary company, our wage bill represents the majority of wages for running our club, ie wages for stadium staff, box office, commercial teams, chefs etc etc etc. I think City shelved a load of costs related to commercial teams and stadium operations to a subsidiary company which made losses.

    Whether they are continuing with that we will wait and see for next round of FFP enquirer if it ever comes.

    I wonder with the removal of Platini someone who started the FFP and has now effectively ended it whether it will start again… he has been shown to have a propensity for a cash incentive I wonder whether he was “influenced” to relax FFP?

  67. Gööner In Exile says:

    Chas re feeling guilty so you should…..we all thought that was costing the earth going home and away but with a cracking discount like that obviously paying for at least one beer on a Matchday turns out your just freeloading 🙂

    The point about getting good news out there is further highlighted by the BBC Price of Football, there is an asterisk at the bottom of the page that says what clubs are doing for away fans, Arsenal are one of the few that are discounting every ticket.

    We shouldn’t forget that some clubs have entered into agreements that prices will be same for the away fans at both grounds, is Newcastle charge Sunderland fans £30, and Sunderland charge Newcastle the same.

    How many clubs have actually agreed that with Arsenal, or would be interested in doing so? None and not many as in the main the same fixture away from home costs more than the corresponding fixture at home, for arguments sake Norwich have previously charged Arsenal fans £50 to get into Carrow Road, Norwich fans pay £27 at the Emirates.

  68. Ant says:

  69. mickydidit89 says:

    I really wasn’t making any particular point.
    I don’t think Arsenal is either cheap or expensive by English standards. Seems about right.
    Now English prices against German. Different ball game. Yes reasons for that, but look at the Bayern business model and it is vastly superior to ours in my opinion.

  70. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    What is the rateable value of the Stadium of Light or Carrow Rd? etc etc etc

    It suits the media narrative that AFC have the most expensive tickets so why would they bother do to any proper investigation?

    Yawn, Yawn.

  71. kelsey says:


    I think what is more relevent is that our players wages are now nearly as high as anyone else in the top club bracket.

    I also think it’s very easy for Usmanov to demand from shall we say outside but having said that I still think it’s a pity that Kroenke got majority share holdings.

    Generally American owned clubs in EPL don’t exactly have a whale of a time 😉

  72. Apologies if someone has already put this up.

  73. chas says:

    If anyone wants to follow the AGM click on here and hit refresh every now and again.

  74. chas says:

    Haha, these made me laugh.

  75. chas says:

    ….followed by……

  76. mickydidit89 says:


    Who the hell do they think they are?
    Our cheapest Cat A tickets are £65.50
    So we are giving them a massive discount 🙂

    The fact that they travel from Germany and £64 translates as €90 is irrelevant 🙂

  77. GoonerB says:

    Good day all. Had a bit of an AWOL period so sorry I have missed many fine posts. Hopefully will have a moment or two over the next couple of days to look back on some of them and the comments, although I have had brief looks at the general mood on A.A.

    Thanks for today’s musings Norfolk. I must admit I am not too sure the £3m bothers me as much as others. He is the owner and is entitled to do what he wants. If he was taking £3m and saying there is nothing left for squad investment that is one thing, but I don’t think that is the case.

    My focus would be more on the squad and how to get it onto a level where it can compete consistently at the levels of the Barca’s, Madrid’s and Bayern’s. I don’t think we are far away and I have noted that the general euphoria of the Utd win carried on for a while. Why not anyway?

    I would have some caution though as I feel Utd are a bit poor at the moment, and we need to be able to produce these performances regularly if we want to win the EPL, which I believe we can this year.

  78. Hi Exile, I hope your not too battered by work, as a word of warning don’t get netted by the shoal of fishy puns, I’m hoping the tide has ebbed on that one. 😀

    I tend to agree about the £3 million, it’s a drop in the ocean and there’s definitely nothing fishy about it.

  79. Outsider says:

    These fishing jokes are a bunch carp!

  80. Where’s Stevie P today then….. suppose he’s gone f*@king f*@shing….

  81. Outsider says:

    Extra: Boss on title race and tickets

    On the title race…

    The top eight can compete. At the moment the top eight can mathematically compete. I would say five or six teams.

    On Chelsea not being in the top eight…

    They have some ground to make up. It is different to anybody out there at the moment, even Chelsea. Of course when you have many teams in front of you it is difficult to catch up but they have the quality.

    On if Chelsea are outsiders…

    I don’t know. I don’t care too much about that. My worries are about my team and what we can do. We are two points behind the leaders and what all the other teams do is up to them. What I just want to say is mathematically you cannot rule anyone out at the moment.

    On if this is the best chance to win league…

    At the moment we are in the fight and that’s what you want. I believe we have the potential to do it and that’s what we want to show now in the coming games. I’ve been here for 19 years and we had some turning points in the history. When I arrived we had the financial potential to fight for the titles. After, when we moved into the new stadium, there was a period where we did not have the opportunity to fight for the title but we had to work very hard to stay at the top. In the last two, maybe two-and-a-half years, we are back in the fight because we have the financial potential again to get the best players. When you look well at the last two years, we’ve brought in Ozil, Alexis, Petr Cech. That shows that we are back and are capable to fight to get the best players.

    On how much his team at Watford will be mindful of Bayern…

    Not at all. For me the most important game is Watford because the Premier League is the most important competition, with the Champions League. I would say the Premier League is the most important competition for us.

    On benefitting from no international-based injuries…

    You can never speculate on that. You can fight for the championship if you turn up with the performances in every single game, and I believe that we’ve just come out of a very strong performance. What is at stake is for us to again show the same quality in our performance. That means show that you can focus in every single game and turn up with the same commitment in every single game. That’s what is at stake for us. Away from home, our results in the last two years have been very strong and championship [winning] stuff. But we know that the Premier League is more difficult every year as well.

    On the effects of pressure…

    I think our team has always performed as well as they could. We have missed some games, but every team does that. If you look at the consistency of our period where we had to fight every hard to be in the top four, we did that always. So I believe that we were always consistent. We did not always have the potential to fight for the championship maybe, but we were always consistent because we qualified 18 years for the Champions League and only one club has done better so we were always consistent.

    On ticket prices…

    It is my job to do that (offer value for money). Overall I feel that we have made a conscious effort in our board meetings to block the increase of our tickets and in seven of the past 10 years we have not increased our prices. Overall there is a desire ion our board to stabilise and make the tickets more affordable for people. Is football more expensive? Yes, but Saturday or Sunday if you want to go to rugby you will see the tickets are expensive there as well. It is maybe part of professionalism and a modern society.


  82. Micky and Chas are walking down a Cornish country lane when they meet Transplant and Cockie coming the other way and they have two massive fish. Micky and Chas ask where they got the fish from and Transplant tells them, if you go the way we came then you’ll come to a bridge. One of you hold the other by the feet and dangle over him the bridge, as the fish swim by you catch them.

    So Micky and Chas toodle off down the lane till they come to the bridge, Micky holds Chas by the feet (with his good arm) and dangles Chas over the bridge and says, “Chas just shout when you have a fish ok”.

    Half hour goes by and Micky shouts to Chas, “Have you caught anything yet?” and Chas replies, “No not yet mate”.

    An hour passes and Micky shouts, “oi you wanker, have you caught anything yet?” and Chas shouts back, “No not yet you tosspot”.

    Two hours pass by and Micky shouts, “Right you dipstick, you must have caught something by now?.” and Chas shouts back, “Stop bugging me you plonker”.

    Anyway, after four hours Chas shouts out, “Quick Micky…. pull me up, pull me up”. and Micky shouts, back “why, have you caught a fish at last?”

    And Chas shouts back, “No, but there’s a fucking train coming”.

  83. Right that’s it for me…. I’m off to watch a prawn video 🙂

  84. The AGM is over, apparently everything in the garden is rosy, Wenger is there for as long as he wishes to stay, we only buy players who can improve the squad not just because we have the money to do so. The £3 million is for advice from experts.

    Not a word from Silent Stan.

    That’s about it.

    Oh! Arsenal got a nice warm welcome.

  85. The Cockie Monster says:

    Nice one `69er !………………………the only truth in that tale is the availability and consistency of Cornish trains !……………… every 4 hours !.

    Norfolk !…………………………………So Stan is an expert on Football !……………………the fcuker is not even an expert on American Football…….basketball…….baseball……..lacrosse etc` and for someone as rich as him, you would have thought he could afford a more convincing hair piece than his wife`s minge on top of his head !…….what sort of example does he set for all the balding AAers on here ?……can you imagine Rasp, Raddy, `69er, Transplant and others meeting at the Arsenal Tavern wearing the wives muffs on their heads !…….the place would stink like a fishmongers !. hahaha

  86. The Cockie Monster says:

    That photo of Ant`s @08:24……………………….Honestly ….I actually thought the character next to Gunnersaurus was the Totnumb mascot, because it looked like a Spud !.

  87. Cockie, Stan amply demonstrated his knowledge of football by totally living up to his soubriquet “Silent”.

    The advice paid for was not specificaly football related, but covered various things such as marketing, legal and communications. In fact the same as last year.

  88. The Cockie Monster says:

    5/6/7(depends on how many turn up ! ) a-side football tonight !…..not so much Tippy Tappy, more the Cornish way ( as in St Agnes)…….. Stippy Stappy !.

  89. The Cockie Monster says:

  90. RA says:

    Thanks for the inside info, Outsider – @ 1:33

    Have you met GN5? He is also an inside outer – or that might be an outside inner – anyway you are both nice chaps. 😀

  91. stevepalmer1 says:

    Evening all, Apparently a few dodgy questions asked but our people handled them quite easily. In other words the meeting will end early should you ask the wrong questions.

    Season tickets,
    How can you ask for reductions, when they sell out every season. 97% of the tickets were renewed so no wonder i am still waiting.

    Do supporters get value for money, Being in the top half of the table and getting into Europe for 18 years , i feel the answer has to be probably, as would you want to watch your club survive at the bottom for a reduced price.

    Kroenke taking £3 million for his company, for expert advice. Good advice can be money saving and could in all honesty save that and more in a season, but when you own the football club and you can offer advice to the Board, you would assume that, that is also to his own benefit, as well as other shareholders.

    Always a dodgy payment, and will bring questions from all, Handled well from Sir Chips and the questioned that likened him and Kroenke as Blatter and Platini hit home rather hard, This Payment in future will be explained in full detail in the future .

  92. Big Raddy says:

    I want to be on the Board. I can do as good a job at the AGM as Kroenke, so why not?

    I would even take a drop in fees to just the £2 million.

  93. stevepalmer1 says:

    Evening Raddy, I bet his syrup lifted when the question of the 3 mill came up.

  94. stevepalmer1 says:

    When you consider 3 mill cannot even buy a decent player, shows how much money is in football.

  95. Big Raddy says:

    Bendtner gets €4m a year on the bench at Wolfsburg!

  96. stevepalmer1 says:

    My point exactly 🙂

  97. mickydidit89 says:

    Evening Steve
    Evening Erik

    Not Eveninging anyone before 6pm as that would be wrong

    If I was Stan, and some prick asked me that £3M question I’d take out £30M next time 🙂

  98. mickydidit89 says:

    That Bendtner fact is staggering

  99. mickydidit89 says:

    Can’t drive, and can’t surf, so not happy anyway

    What happened last week? On OUR surf beach. Mate had dolphin around her as she sat waiting for a wave. She kept patting the water and it came back three times. So so so jealous

    Here’s Dave a few years ago, and a bit further up the coast

  100. stevepalmer1 says:

    Evening Micky, makes you laugh really doesn;t it put as much as you like in and it becomes Arsenal’s, take a bit out and your a monster,

  101. mickydidit89 says:

    Hi Steve
    What kind of an answer was the guy expecting? 🙄

  102. stevepalmer1 says:

    When Usmanov was reported to be going to ask, you just knew somebody else would ask. apparently the meeting could have been ended early.

  103. mickydidit89 says:

    Never did answer your post
    I’m with RC78’s comment
    In the League, luck evens out, whereas there is an element of the stuff in the Cups.

    Draws, maybe meeting certain teams at better times than others (our/their key injuries) and so on.
    Thanks anyway

  104. stevepalmer1 says:

    Wenger reported that he couldn’t stop Sanchez from playing for his country even though he had a hip problem, didn’t sound that bad as he scored a couple, he hinted that he may have a doubt for Watford.

  105. stevepalmer1 says:

    Thats ok Micky we all have our own opinions , Naturally, if we go on and win the league, i will swear out loud, that it was all luck. 🙂

  106. mickydidit89 says:

    Mmmm, ok Steve
    Just done a U-turn 🙂
    We could indeed win the league, and I now agree we’ll need luck. On the injury front
    Either that, or they have spent squillions on expensive machines to prevent injuries from ever happening to Sanchez, Theo or Francis 🙂

  107. stevepalmer1 says:

    Don’i forget the January window Micky 🙂

  108. Big Raddy says:

    Or buy expensive back-ups for all our important players aka MC

  109. Big Raddy says:

    Steve 🙂

  110. stevepalmer1 says:

    Top of the league and money in the bank 🙂

  111. mickydidit89 says:

    Do not tease me with words like “transfer window” 🙂

  112. mickydidit89 says:

    Hey Erik
    I’m going to be in Dusseldorf on Monday, and Dortmund on Tuesday
    Very happy memories will return
    Tragically, I land back in Bristol at 20:50 on Tuesday, precisely timed to miss the game completely 😦

  113. mickydidit89 says:

    Happily for German road users, I will not be driving 🙂

  114. Rasp says:

    Evening all, GN5’s …… sorry Outsider’s 🙂 post @ 1:33 pretty much confirms that AW is favouring the EPL over the CL.

  115. mickydidit89 says:

    Will you be cross if you get there on Tuesday to find a weakened side?

  116. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. I am off to Krakow tomorrow for a few days. Back late Monday, so I will be writing a late PM and looking forward to AW putting out a reserve team.

  117. Big Raddy says:

    Driving is way over-rated

  118. mickydidit89 says:

    Shit me Erik, we’re like bloom’in twins despite the canyon of differences 🙂
    Next stop for me? Krakow

  119. mickydidit89 says:

    I reckon Sanchez will be rested against the Hornets and we’ll go all out to beat Bayern

  120. Big Raddy says:

    As you say – a canyon of differences!

    Let’s try and find an Emirates game to meet up next year.

    I agree about Sanchez

  121. mickydidit89 says:

    We’re going to qualify and meet in St Petersburg this Spring

  122. Gööner In Exile says:

    I’ll take three points over Watford and a performance against Bayern. But what I really want to see in the Bayern game is us not allow them to pass all game long and go on the back foot as we sometimes do in the games against possession/pressing teams, I want to see us pass and move forward constantly.

    In fact checking my diary o just want to see the game, haven’t seen any CL game in full this season as my clients are keeping me busy.

  123. Rasp says:

    Hi Micky, sorry I’ve only just read your question. I won’t be at all happy if we field a significantly weakened side against Bayern.

    Although we’ve got a relatively large squad, we’ve seen in the first 2 CL games that bringing in too many second string players damages the fluidity of our play.

    As I have already said, Cech is a must for me and I’d add Coquelin to that too.

  124. LB says:

    Wenger has shown a lot of irritation when asked about the selection of Ospina over Cech in CL, I am fascinated to see if he sticks to his guns on Tuesday.

    As for Sanchez, he seems to be the one player who has enough clout to say when he is rested and when he isn’t — and the man clearly likes to play, that has got to be the main reason he decided to come THOF in the first place, having been messed about on and off the bench at Barcelona. So, that said even though the best thing to do would be rest him for Watford in order to give him time to recover for Bayern, my guess is he will start against Watford but come off early.

  125. RA says:


    When you said;

    “Evening Erik

    Not Eveninging anyone before 6pm as that would be wrong”

    That is technically correct, but practically inoperable as it is always after 6 p.m. somewhere in the world.

    [Altho Chas will try to prove me wrong — obviously] 🙂

  126. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Given BM have already 6 points perhaps they will field a weakened team?

    Wait a mo’ – that is football talk early in the morning – get a grip. Anyone recommend a good second hand DSLR camera to move on from point & shoot?

  127. mickydidit89 says:

    Hey Erik

    Carrying on from last night on the subject of that canyon. Well, after we spoke, I won my bid on Ebay, and as of next Thursday’s postal delivery, there is going to be a brand new big difference between us. You will be a guitarist, whereas I will be a violinist.

    You may not see the threat as great, but I will be going about learning with Forest Gumplike crazy person obsession.
    I will do two hours a day, every day, and in ten years I’ll be ‘effing sensational 🙂

    And morning LB and RA (that is if you are UK based)

  128. RA says:

    A one handed violinist – is there no holding back the surfing, cycling dude from Bude? 🙂

    Good morn to all. Have any of you heard the latest Moanhio rant? We could have put it on AA for the Friday session — the guy does seem to have some serious personal ‘issues’.

  129. RA says:


    Two hours violin practice per diem, every day?
    I suspect that unless it is in a field populated only by sheep — you will never make 10 years.

  130. mickydidit89 says:

    Don’t ever call me a cyclist 🙂
    100% should be banned from the roads

  131. Morning all… becuase it’s still morning here Redders 🙂

    Micky, I have to assume that your violing playing days will be delayed somewhat due to a broken arm. Is your bow arm, because the action is all in the wrist…. especially on the G String 🙂

  132. mickydidit89 says:

    Erik Two Pads

    Second hand camera! For less then the price of one of those girlie machines of yours, you could buy an excellent Sony device

    You do not want to dick around with anything bigger

  133. mickydidit89 says:

    Now, why was I expecting a comment like that NB 🙂

  134. Rasp says:

    Morning all,

    Does anyone have a rant they’d like to let loose on AA today?

  135. mickydidit89 says:

    Might do Rasp
    Certainly angry enough
    Give me 20 mins

  136. Rasp says:

    Excellent, thanks micky 🙂

  137. First uestion about your knowledge of violin playing Micky. What does this have to do with bow movement?

  138. mickydidit89 says:

    Sent Rasp

    Nothing at all NB. Trick question. The frog is the rigid bit at the end.
    I’ve been youtubing 🙂

  139. Gööner In Exile says:

    Raddy not knowing what point and shoot your using makes it difficult to recommend, personally I’d stick to the big boys Canon or Nikon.

    I’m a Canon man, they are running out of numbering options but basically:

    1D and 5D pro choice
    7D and 70D semi pro choice
    700D amateur/hobbyist
    1000D may as well stick to point and shoot.

    Should also note that if you go for the 1 or 5D they generally have full frame sensors, the others have crop sensors, therefore on a 50mm lens the resultant image will look different between the full frame and crop frame bodies, there is a lot of hand wringing about which is best but basically you have to understand that a 50mm on a full frame lens performs like a traditional 38mm film camera on the crop frame body you need more like a 30mm lens to get the 38mm effect.

    Lenses made for the crop frames can’t be used on full frame sensors if you think you’ll ever push up to a 1D or 5D you should consider that when buying lenses.

    The best advice I can give is not to scrimp on the glass, and go for fixed focal lenses over zoom lenses for better image quality.

    I still have a 500D which you can pick up quite cheaply, if I was upgrading I’d probably try and get a 700D or 70D but I’m not dissatisfied by the performance. Except in low light where digital noise becomes an issue. I’ll find a link for a good camera review website I use which gives good comparisons of noise on images.

    Don’t be swayed by megapixel count either as for print purposes most DSLRs on the market will give a good quality print up to around A3, it’s only if you want to crop sections out of your image that you may consider needing a high MP count, and again the cropped image quality will still depend on your glass, the quality of the shot and the noise in the image.

    I use a Canon 500D, a Tamron 18-270mm lens which is my “walk around” lens when I don’t know what I might like to photograph, a 28mm pancake lens and the famous 50mm (nifty fifty) which is great for portraiture and street photography.

    Not sure if they post to Denmark but Warehouse Express or WexPhotographic have a very good refurb section on their website.

  140. The trick Micky is the movement of your wrist. The up stroke and the down stroke. You have to manipulate your bow with the wrist. Practice long strokes which go the whole length and then some short strokes which only use an inch or two….. if you hear that you are grunting then you are doing it wrong…. a smooth stroke is essential for true satisfaction. 😀

  141. mickydidit89 says:

    You have absolutely no idea as to how much research I have done into exactly that 🙂

    Erik will not understand one word of that. “Amateur” does not begin to describe his casual approach 🙂

  142. Micky 😀

    You may be interested to know that I played violin when at school. I only joined the class because the music teacher was a gorgeous young woman named Miss Grigsby. She was fresh out of Teacher training and I got aroused when she told me how to use my wrist.

    It turned out that I was a natural and reached quite a good level.
    After school I’d go home to my bedroom and practice my wrist movements 🙂

  143. mickydidit89 says:

    Absolutely relentless 🙂

  144. Rasp says:

    New post everyone ……..

%d bloggers like this: