Arsenal invest a record €130m in new players

Premier League club £12.6m in the black, but title chances are slender

Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium. The Gunners do not play again until March 4th, when they head to Liverpool. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium. The Gunners do not play again until March 4th, when they head to Liverpool. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

 

Arsenal have announced half-year results which show a record investment in players of some £110.5 million (€130.3 million) and an increase in football turnover to £191.1 million.

The figures for the parent holding company of the Premier League club are for the six months ending November 30th, 2016.

During the 2016 summer transfer window, Arsenal signed the likes of Granit Xhaka for £38.25 million and Shkodran Mustafi for £34.85 million, while forward Lucas Perez arrived in a £17 million deal.

There was an overall group profit before tax of £12.6 million, compared to a loss of £6.2 million for the same period in 2015.

Arsenal have no short-term debt, with cash reserves of some £100.5 million, down from £135.9 million a year ago.

However, it is understood some £65 million of that is committed on outstanding transfer fees and payments, while there is also a balance designated solely for debt service reserves of £23.3 million.

The Premier League club also continue to pay off the financing of the move to the 60,000-seater Emirates Stadium via a long-term fixed-rate bond at a low interest rate following the move from Highbury in 2006.

‘Robust’

Arsenal chairman Sir Chips Keswick said: “The financial results for the first half of the year are robust.

“As expected, increased Premier League broadcasting revenues have had a direct impact on player costs, both in terms of transfer prices and player wage demands.

“We have invested in our own playing squad at record levels. It has also been exciting to see more young players emerging from our academy.

“We are very focused on producing a positive and exciting closing run and with the support of our fans, I believe together we can achieve a successful and memorable end to the season.”

Arsenal secured a place in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup with a 2-0 fifth-round win at Sutton on Monday night and will face another non-league side, Lincoln, in the last eight.

The Gunners do not play again until March 4th, when they head to Liverpool. There, Arsene Wenger’s squad will be aiming to keep themselves on course for another top-four finish as a title challenge again looks beyond them.

Arsenal are also unlikely to progress further in the Champions League this season, having lost the first leg of their last-16 tie away to Bayern Munich 5-1.

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