Does Money Buy you the Premiership Title?

This was a reply to a GoonerB question which needed a wider audience

Everyone saw the recent Watford game in which we won 3-0. Was anyone really surprised? No. Why? Because Arsenal have a better team. Why do Arsenal have a better team? Because Arsenal have more money to buy better players. This is not rocket science. So I think it is fair to say that if Arsenal played Watford 100 times, Arsenal would win 95 of them.

It then naturally follows that if there were a league of just those two teams that Arsenal would win most of the time. However as the odds suggest Arsenal could have an off day as we did when Watford dumped us out of the FA cup. This is the equivalent of Leicester winning the league, they are the exception that proves the rule that the clubs with greater spending power are more likely to win the league.

Things should be clear now using the Arsenal – Watford example, where it gets complicated is when loyalty gets in the way because that can be the only excuse for not seeing that exactly the same applies to Arsenal and Man City. If they they played us for 100 consecutive games they are more likely than not to win 95 of them for the same reasons I give above.

Winning is quite simply all about money, it is not a case of Stan Kroenke loosening the purse strings; he is not competing against another rich man he is competing against an oil rich country. It cannot be won and should not be expected to be won.

So what does this mean? It means that yes we can still win the league but the odds are against us. What I want is a manager who understands this and accepts the challenge in order to increase the small chance of winning the league to the maximum that it can be. And who do I think is best placed to achieve this? Arsene Wenger and that is why I remain loyal.

That obviously needs explanation but I don’t want to turn this into a book.

Taken from a comment written by LB

38 Responses to Does Money Buy you the Premiership Title?

  1. VP of Oz says:


  2. RA says:

    Good Morning, Mr Chas,

    So to ensure I understand what is being asked;

    Does money buy [the wealthiest] club [the best players] to win the PL title?

    There are ancillary questions of course such as;

    — how do clubs know who are the best players?

    — Only one club can win the EPL each year, so are there a finite number of ‘best’ players that will be absorbed by a 25 man squad?

    — if not, there maybe plenty of best players still available for the 2nd, 3rd or 4th wealthiest clubs – so does the question need to be expanded.

    — Does the quality of the manager not come into the equation — the wealthiest club might buy the best players, but the manager may be an eejit and have no idea about strategy, tactics or his ass from his elbow – does that matter?

    That GB is a cunning fellow, and tricky with it!! 😀

  3. chas says:

    Ah, not the response I was expecting. 🙂

    I think there’s a pretty clear correlation between money and the title.
    Chelsea, Man City, Man United, rinse and repeat.

    Obviously there are fluctuations because teams change manager and playing personnel fairly regularly.

    The exception to the rule, Leicester, caught it bang on with the moneyed teams all in transition at the same time while they stumbled on a winning counter-attacking formula for success before slipping back into their accustomed obscurity.

    Does this mean it’s not worth turning up anymore?

  4. chas says:

    It all matters, RA, hence the fluctuations in who wins, but the correlation is there nonetheless.

  5. “That obviously needs explanation but I don’t want to turn this into a book.”

    Hand the post over to GoonerB then.

  6. Man City. Chelsea.
    Look at their respective titles history before the Sheik and the Oligarch arrived. That explains all.

    And assess Pep Guardiola’s travel history with “Mercenary Airlines”.
    He only goes where the money is guaranteed, not only into his own bank account, but to lay out on players.

    Fact is, as far as managing Bayern Munich in a one-team league, Mr. Bean could have won the very same trophies as Mr. Pep.

    Guardiola’s next club? PSG probably. If not, then Juventus.
    He has his CV planned to age 55-60 already. That’s for sure.

  7. Chelsea formed 1905.
    Won the 1st Division (now Premier League) 1954-55.
    One title win in 98 years.

    2003 Abramovic buys the club, and immediately splashes the cash…
    Chelsea then win the Premier League 5 times:

    Strange coincidence(s). Not!

  8. LB says:

    There are ancillary questions of course such as;

    — how do clubs know who are the best players?

    Any manager worth his salt knows that Messi is a “best” player.
    I thought my Watford – Arsenal, City — Arsenal example explained that but hey ho.

    — Only one club can win the EPL each year, so are there a finite number of ‘best’ players that will be absorbed by a 25 man squad?

    Who has spent the most money this season and who is going to win the league?

    — if not, there maybe plenty of best players still available for the 2nd, 3rd or 4th wealthiest clubs – so does the question need to be expanded.

    There are plenty of 2nd, 3rd and 4th best players for the 2nd, 3rd and 4th positions in the league.

    — Does the quality of the manager not come into the equation — the wealthiest club might buy the best players, but the manager may be an eejit and have no idea about strategy, tactics or his ass from his elbow – does that matter?

    This can happen and Leicester can win the league but he is sacked at the end of the season and replaced with someone who can win the league

    That GB is a cunning fellow, and tricky with it!!

    I am not convinced that GB is cunning but I know you are RA 🙂

  9. RA says:

    But there is a simple factual statement that shows that you, Chas, and you, sunbathing Big Al, are wrong!!!

    FFP — there you go. Get out of that!!!

    We were told by UEFA (and naturally I believe everything I hear from that wonderful entity) that Financial Fair Play would ensure clubs would only be able to buy players within their own financial means, within the boundaries of both their turnover and profits, so that it would be a level financial playing field, and all clubs would be (sort of) equal.

    Bit like Animal Farm.

    Neither you two, or that camel man GB can disagree with UEFA — so all the statistical data supplied by Big Al is irredeemably FAKE NEWS or a short-term glitch.

    So there!! 😀

  10. LB says:

    Does it mean it is not worth turning up anymore?

    I know you already know the answer to that but for those who might not and I am always surprised how large the number is, here goes.

    A dear friend of mine who occasionally writes a comment here said:

    “We will never win the league with Arsene Wenger as manager”

    To which I delicately replied: so what the f—k are we supposed to do in the mean time, stop supporting Arsenal?

    It is what it is, changing the whole attack mid way through the season in an attempt to improve things is no mean feat and attracting Aubamayang still says to me the Arsene Wenger has got it. Maybe not enough to win the league but has it enough to do better than anyone else right now.

    I do expect the man to step down at the end of next season, this is the first time that the realisation of a change at the helm will happen, although, I have to admit, I am not really looking forward to it

  11. RA says:

    Well that’s a fine kettle of fish I have got myself into, LB, in my rush to comment — in-between finishing some work by 12 noon, I mistakenly read the Post as being based on a comment by GB, and failed to note it was a response by your good self.

    Would that have made a difference? Well, I have become a little concerned that the camel herder (aka GB) and I were agreeing far too much on various matters lately — and I was determined to teach the blighter a lesson.

    Failing to realise your place in the Post, I am afraid you have become an innocent victim of my ‘wit’. But your replies are pretty good, in the circumstances – and GB has gotten off on this occasion – but I will hoist him by his breeches another time!! 😀

    For what it is worth — there can be no denying the correlation between investing huge money in buying the very best players available and the likelihood of winning the EPL and also the CL.

    The ancillary matters are pretty straight forward — wealthy clubs can also attract the best managers — FFP is bollocks, and a little shady massaging of sponsorship deals takes care of these-called turnover and profit limitations.

    [But don’t tell Gooner B a bad boy!] 😀

  12. RA says:

    There are far too many people who heap opprobrium on Arsene the man — and that is totally unacceptable.

    As for his role as manager that is more understandable with the decline in Arsenal’s credentials as serious EPL challengers – but he is in my opinion the best manager Arsenal have ever had, (altho comparing different eras is difficult) and he revolutionised all the EPL clubs’ coaching disciplines in the late 90s and early 21st Century — but nothing and no-one is forever — and others have copied him and some have equalled his skill, as age takes a bite — so if he wants to manage PSG or Bayern or Barça and make use of all their money, he could easily still go on and win the CL more than once!!

    [15 mins left till noon — gotta go.] 😀

  13. You’re fake news Yankee Pants!

    Now educate yourself…

    Manchester City
    Founded 1880
    Won the 1st Division (now Premier League):
    Two title wins in 131 years.

    2008 Abu Dhabi United Group Investment and Development Limited buys the club and immediately splashes the cash…

    [ Wikipedia : edit ] (the takeover was announced on the morning of 1 September. It sparked various transfer “deadline-day” rumours… …minutes before the transfer window closed, the club signed Robinho from Real Madrid for a British record transfer fee of £32.5 million. The wealth of the new owners meant that in the summer of 2009, the club was able to finance the purchase of several experienced international players prior to the new season, spending more than any other club in the Premier League.

    City the win the Premier League 2 times:

    Strange coincidence(s). Not!

    For the youngsters on this site, and for those who until recently were not taking much interest in Manchester City, read the best bits (following) …

    In the ‘80s City spent 4 seasons in the 2nd-tier (now labelled the Championship).

    Also, from 1996-2002 City weren’t in the top-tier (Premier League).
    They were in the Championship (second-tier), except 1998-89.
    That season Man City were actually in the 3rd tier (now League 2).

  14. LB says:

    OK, I admit it, I had to look “opprobrium” up. Harsh criticism, you learn something every day.

  15. GoonerB says:

    Thanks LB, Great post, and some excellent looking comments from my brief look. Need to comment ( obviously 🙂 ), but not really here at the moment. Will try and return later.

  16. In a nutshell…my 2 posts relating to Chelsea and Man City respectively show quite clearly that they both had practically no history to speak of, and certainly no history to shout about, before they began “buying their trophies”.

  17. New player transfers to Man City 2017 and January 2018

    Jack Harrison £3.60million
    Aymeric Laporte £58.5million
    Benjamin Mendy £52million
    Kyle Walker £46million
    Bernardo Silva £45million
    Emerson £36million
    Danilo £27million
    Douglas Luiz £11million
    Olarenwaju Kayode £3.5million

    TOTAL = £279 million

    Don’t you just love FFP. Where would we be without it?


    Super Headline Post, LB.
    I also like your post @ 11.27.
    I agree Arsene will step down at the end of his contract 2019.

  18. Pat7 says:

    Well done LB. I disagree in part with your conclusion/s but there’s no doubt money is a factor…..

    Arsenal did great when he first came in and for several years with the assets laft him – a phenomenal, well trained defence and leadership etc. He used his ‘modern’ knowledge to improve us.

    Since then, various computer assistance, training and recuperation methods etc have all come in or advanced and having passed our knowledge to lesser clubs, they have improved to a point where they can beat us on an off day.

    Whereas Ferguson changed his assistants and delegated, no doubt making use of this new information technology, Arsene has tried to do it alone and that has now and for many years caused stagnation and us incapable of keeping up on a consistent basis. The game is now smart management which is where we fail – hopefully this will be the last season in this state!

    Pochetino has shown what can be done on far less a wage bill with a CEO getting the best deals from offloads and obviously better scouting in the main, not paying the high levels like most clubs until players actually perform for a decent period at the higher level. Fergie did the same leaving him the cash to put the boat out for special players eg Ronaldo, as they come along – with the new ‘management recruits’ we seem to be changing to that strategy at last!

    We are also not upgrading our players to the same degree due to the dated coaching and tactical/preparation for matches. Defence and goalkeeping which used to be our strength is laughable/painful depending on how you look at it.

    So, in conclusion, money and smartness are needed along with the personnel to create the above environment. It is a team effort needed now, not a one man band, and the ability of a manager to delegate and take that ‘smart’ advice.

  19. mickydidit89 says:

    Nice comment LB
    Well posted Chas

    Yip, money counts. I guess the barormeter is do we as a club over, or under perform.

    Net spends anyone 🙂

  20. REMI AWOJOBI says:

    Is it money decisions that will make a coach leave an injury prone player like Diaby for 7 years; refusing to get defensive midfielder that will help his cause?

  21. GunnerN5 says:

    GunnerN5 says:
    March 17, 2018 at 1:54 pm

    Money has always been the main determining factor in a club (in most sports) being able to buy the best players. If at the same time the club are also able to buy the best manager available then they have a clear opportunity to be the best – for a period of time.

    Arsenal started the ball rolling in the 30’s but they first bought the best manager Herbert Chapman who in turn bought the best players and Arsenal proceeded to dominate the 30’s.

    Occasionally an underdog barks the loudest but that is rare. In the PL it has happened twice – Blackburn Rovers and Leicester City

  22. GunnerN5 says:

    LB – you should write a book.

  23. fred1266 says:

    Best post ever

    Totally agree with arsene staying in charge

  24. Eddie says:

    Very good post and very accurate. Sad state of affairs, I am truly put off football even more than I was last year. If we have no chance of winning the league, then there is nothing to look forward to next season. or the season after or the season after that. Or ever

  25. Eddie says:

    I tell you what is wrong with football – footballers themselves. Today I tried on a watch, exact same as TH14 wears, the white AP one. Someone forcefully pulled it of my wrist shouting that it’s a £120k watch! Can you imagine – I could buy 8 good cars with that. Or a brand new Range rover. And never shop in Asda again.

  26. GunnerN5 says:

    Eddie, you should read the article Chas posted yesterday, it’s an interview with Per Mertesacker.

  27. Eddie says:

    GN5 – I’ve read it yesterday and commented. Very sad, but that’s Per, he is an intelligent sensitive lad. Not many like him. Majority are too thick to suffer. Koscielny would be the other one I’d worry about

  28. GunnerN5 says:

    I agree Eddie far too many players become play boys and they cast a big shadow.

  29. chas says:

    So much for the posh egg-chasing knobheads.

  30. chas says:

    Could be worse – we could be playing this weekend.

  31. chas says:

  32. Rasp says:

    Hi everyone, sorry to be late to the debate.

    Thanks for the post LB.

    We all cite examples that prove our case or interpret events in a way that corroborate our deeply held beliefs. You must be the most loyal and ardent Arsene supporter there is … and I include the admirable GN5 in that.

    Of course you are correct that if even a half decent manager has apparently unlimited financial resources he will be able to build a title winning team = Guardiola/City.

    However, even with our lack of a balanced team and neglect of the art of defending … they still would not beat us 95 times out of 100. When the players are motivated and the team is balanced, we can play some amazing football.

    City are very consistent in their quality. We are the least consistent team of the top 6 .. and that is why we are in 6th position.

    If a team is better man for man, then it is only the manager who can make the difference for the lesser team to win.

    We have been guilty of repeating the same mistakes over and over.

    The training staff have failed to address basic weaknesses in our football. We are the most predictable team in the EPL … and that makes it easy for the other managers to devise strategies to undo us. = operate a high press if they have the players with the ability and work ethic … or park the bus if not, because they know that negates our over complicated ‘walk it into the goal style’. Add to that our vulnerability to set pieces and to being hit on the break and the formula is complete.

    So yes money makes a huge difference, but it is far from the only criterion. Our inconsistency rears its ugly head most seasons … and then often the players will rally round and put in performances to pull us back to where we should be … but wouldn’t it be great if we could find a system and a balance of defence and attack that brought the consistency so that wouldn’t be necessary.

    Here’s something to watch over the summer if AW stays another year …. will he buy a new keeper? They’re not expensive in terms of the + or – they can add to the points total. We have to stop being the nice guys. It’s a war out there on the pitch, we need to be up for the fight more than the opposition.

  33. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Of course money buys the PL title.

    Citing the success (?) of Spurs is an irrelevance, they have won sweet FA.

    Leicester? Where are they now? Where is Ranieri?

    Could we do better with another manager? Pure speculation and opinion. No-one knows.

    Will AW buy a GK in summer? Definitely, he shouldn’t have let Sczezsny leave.

  34. Eddie says:

    where were you Raddy? In Syria? you sound very feisty this morning

  35. Eddie says:

    what will our Kieron do?? He is a good player, definitely fit for EPL

  36. Eddie says:

    I agree with rasp, to a point.
    Sheikh Mansour bought City 10 years ago and only now Pep made them into a fantastic team. 8 years. 4 previous managers (if you count Hughes) produced good results but noting like what Pep has achieved.

    Also, 4 other teams in the same position as us are doing better than us and the biggest problem I have is the fact that we are regressing. Number of games we didn’t turn up speak for themselves, the players cannot be bothered, or cannot face it are all unacceptable given that it is the Arsenal we are talking about ffs, one of the biggest clubs in the world, was biggest in this country and now we are closer to mid table than to the top. No, I refuse to accept the unacceptable.

  37. chas says:


  38. Maggie says:

    Theree are tricks for magicians of eah ability degree.

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