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Arsenal’s £143.4m wage bill exposed

Last February, I gave estimated figures of Arsenal’s wage bill, citing the huge amount of money Wenger had wasted on (a) flops, and (b) overpaid youngsters he couldn’t get off the wage bill.

My overall assessment was that, contrary to popular opinion, Arsenal’s failure to compete with the heavy spenders in the Premier League has nothing to do with how much money is available for Wenger to spend, rather how he chooses to spend the considerable resources made available to him.

Yet, while the sum total of my wage bill estimate added up mathematically, the breakdown lacked accuracy and I’ve long been meaning to perfect it. So, armed with further information - and recent access to Arsenal’s full-year accounts, the below update should be a little more accurate an estimate of how Arsenal’s current £143.4m wage bill is made up.

Lukas Podolski £107,000 £5,564,000
Tomas Rosicky £80,000 £4,160,000
Per Mertesacker £80,000 £4,160,000
Andrey Arshavin £78,000 £4,056,000
Santi Carzorla £70,000 £3,640,000
Mikel Arteta £70,000 £3,640,000
Thomas Vermaelen £70,000 £3,640,000
Theo Walcott £60,000 £3,120,000
Olivier Giroud £60,000 £3,120,000
Gervinho £60,000 £3,120,000
Bacary Sagna £60,000 £3,120,000
Marouane Chamakh £60,000 £3,120,000
Andre Santos £60,000 £3,120,000
Jack Wilshere £60,000 £3,120,000
Abou Diaby £60,000 £3,120,000
Denilson £60,000 £3,120,000
Laurent Koscielny £60,000 £3,120,000
Johan Djourou £50,000 £2,600,000
Kieran Gibbs £50,000 £2,600,000
Nicklas Bendtner £50,000 £2,600,000
Sebastien Squillaci £50,000 £2,600,000
Aaron Ramsey £50,000 £2,600,000
Wojciech Szczesny £50,000 £2,600,000
Lukasz Fabianski £50,000 £2,600,000
Ju Young Park £50,000 £2,600,000
Vito Mannone £30,000 £1,560,000
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain £30,000 £1,560,000
Carl Jenkinson £30,000 £1,560,000
Emmanuel Frimpong £30,000 £1,560,000
Francis Coquelin £30,000 £1,560,000
Ryo Miyaichi £18,000 £936,000
Ignasi Miquel £10,000 £520,000
Joel Campbell £10,000 £520,000
Alex Iwobi £750 £39,000
Alfred Mugabo £750 £39,000
Anthony Jeffrey £750 £39,000
Arinse Uade £750 £39,000
Austin Lipman £750 £39,000
Benik Afobe £750 £39,000
Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill £750 £39,000
Chuba Akpom £750 £39,000
Chuks Aneke £750 £39,000
Conor Henderson £750 £39,000
Craig Eastmond £750 £39,000
Damian Martinez £750 £39,000
Daniel Boateng £750 £39,000
Deyan Iliev £750 £39,000
Elton Monteiro £750 £39,000
Glen Kamara £750 £39,000
Hector Bellerin £750 £39,000
Nicholas Yennaris £750 £39,000
Isaac Hayden £750 £39,000
Jack Jebb £750 £39,000
James Shea £750 £39,000
Jernade Meade £750 £39,000
Jon Toral £750 £39,000
Jordan Wynter £750 £39,000
Josh Rees £750 £39,000
Josh Vickers £750 £39,000
Kristoffer Olsson £750 £39,000
Kyle Ebecilio £750 £39,000
Leander Siemann £750 £39,000
Martin Angha £750 £39,000
Nigel Neita £750 £39,000
Philip Roberts £750 £39,000
Reice Charles-Cook £750 £39,000
Samir Bihmoutine £750 £39,000
Samuel Galindo £750 £39,000
Sanchez Watt £750 £39,000
Sead Hajrovic £750 £39,000
Serge Gnabry £750 £39,000
Tarum Dawkins £750 £39,000
Thoma Eisfeld £750 £39,000
Tom Dallison £750 £39,000
Wellington £750 £39,000
Zachari Fagan £750 £39,000
Zak Ansah £750 £39,000
Arsène Wenger £135,000 £7,020,000
Assistant to Manager    
Boro Primorac £7,500 £390,000
Steve Bould £5,000 £260,000
Gerry Peyton £1,300 £67,600
Neil Banfield £1,300 £67,600
Tony Colbert £1,300 £67,600
Tony Roberts £1,300 £67,600
Paul Johnson £1,000 £52,000
Marcus Svensson £1,000 £52,000
James Collins £1,000 £52,000
Ben Knapper £1,000 £52,000
David Wales £1,000 £52,000
Colin Lewin £1,000 £52,000
Gary O'Driscoll £1,000 £52,000
Simon Harland £1,000 £52,000
Kieran Hunt £1,000 £52,000
Darren Page £1,000 £52,000
Danny Flitter £1,000 £52,000
Vic Akers £600 £31,200
Paul Akers £600 £31,200
Steve Rowley (Chief) £1,000 £52,000
Gilles Grimandi £600 £31,200
Tony Banfield £600 £31,200
Danny Karbassiyoon £600 £31,200
Sandro Orlandelli £600 £31,200
Pablo Budner £600 £31,200
Everton Gushiken £600 £31,200
Bobby Bennett £600 £31,200
Francis Cagigao £600 £31,200
Jurgen Kost £600 £31,200
Peter Clarke £600 £31,200
Liam Brady £3,200 £166,400
David Court £1,000 £52,000
Roy Massey £1,000 £52,000
Terry Burton £1,000 £52,000
Steve Gatting £1,000 £52,000
Lee Smelt £1,000 £52,000
Carl Laraman £1,000 £52,000
Steve Leonard £1,000 £52,000
Craig Gant £1,000 £52,000
Dennis Rockall £1,000 £52,000
Lewis Manning £1,000 £52,000
Richard Goddard £1,000 £52,000
Alastair Thrush £1,000 £52,000
Kwame Ampadu £1,000 £52,000
Ivan Gazidis £39,423 £2,049,996
Ken Friar OBE £10,980 £570,960
Peter Hill-Wood £1,500 £67,000
Stanley Kroenke £481 £25,000
Sir Chips Keswick £480 £24,960
Pension/social security £387,500 £20,150,000
Player bonus pool £192,307 £10,000,000
Peripheral staff £160,000 £8,320,000
Total £2,756,771 £143,341,116

(Note to other websites: please link to this weblog rather than publish salary statistics as the figures are being constantly revised) 

The wage bill has risen by 19% from last season and is currently only £19m less than Manchester United’s and £25m behind Chelsea. All clubs trail behind Manchester City, although just because Man City have a wage bill of £174m doesn’t mean you need a wage bill of £174m to compete for the Premier League.

Money will get you so far in competing for the Premier League, but paying ridiculously over-inflated salaries to beat off the competition is not necessarily a true reflection of a squad’s overall ability or the ultimate route to success. The missing link is a management team’s ability to convert that financial outlay into trophies.

Basically, Man Utd, Chelsea and Arsenal have much fewer resources than Man City, but still have more than enough to field a world class first team + bench that is capable of outstripping the rest of the Premier League and winning consistently enough to mount a title challenge.

This notion can be further assessed by looking at the spend of a team such as Tottenham, who competed with Arsenal for a place in the top four despite spending £30m less in wages, while Newcastle finished just 5 points behind Arsenal despite spending £110m less in wages! The Northern club has halved its wage bill from £74m to £34m over the past two seasons, yet still managed a top four challenge.

If Newcastle can compete with Arsenal notwithstanding a £110m wage deficit, why can’t Arsenal compete with Man City, Chelsea or Man Utd for the title when the wage gap, in relative terms, is far smaller?

This evidence re-establishes the fact that Wenger’s inability to challenge for the title has little to do with being unable to compete financially, but everything to do with inefficient wage spend allied to poor player purchases and rank bad management.

Based on my salary estimates above, we can better view Wenger’s horrendous cash wastage by examining the salary spend on the following distinctly average players over a 4-year period.

Vito Mannone £6.2m
Kieran Gibbs = £10.4m
Ju Young Park = £10.4m
Wojciech Szczesny = £10.4m
Lukasz Fabianski = £10.4m
Aaron Ramsey £10.4m
Johan Djourou £10.4m
Sebastien Squillaci = £10.4m
Nicklas Bendtner = £10.4m
Denilson £12.4m
Abou Diaby £12.4m
Andre Santos £12.4m
Marouane Chamakh = £12.4m

From that list, Wenger has, or will have by the time their contracts expire, blown £139.3m on wages. Add another £24.6m in transfer fees = a total expenditure of £163.9m. In fact, the cost is actually considerably higher as some of those players have been at the club far longer than 4 years - up to 7 in some cases.

Some might bemoan my choice of targets to pick on, but it would only make for worse reading if I chose to include some of Wenger’s other grave disappointments such as Theo Walcott and Andrei Arshavin. Many might want to add a prize dud like Gervinho to the list, or judging by Arsenal’s abysmal defending, Mertesacker, Vermaelen or Koscielny.

The jury’s also out on new signings Giroud and Podolski, who so-far have only 3 goals between them in 10 Premier league games. Early days, but that £24m outlay doesn’t look like coming good either.

The players mentioned in the above two paragraphs have cost the club a further £86m in transfer fees, and over a 4-year contract Arsenal has either spent, or is committed to spending, at least £119.6m in wages on those players.

The question is, how many of these Wenger purchases have proven to be the absolute top quality required to sustain a title challenge or compete for the Champions League? The total expenditure on wages and salaries for all of the above players combined amounts, or will do by the time their contracts expire, to £369,500,000.

Sorry, but the idea that Arsenal is a club unable to compete due to lack of finances is utterly preposterous.

Now that we can take Wenger’s resources out of the equation, we can focus on the real reasons Arsenal has been unable to challenge for trophies going on 8 years, such as the obscene amounts of money Wenger wastes on average players, his total failure to coach defence, fundamentally flawed tactics and clear inability to motivate the squad.


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Reader Comments (157)

Why are Gibbs and Szczesney on the list?

Yes Arshavin should be and Mertersacker has also been our best defender this year.

Are average squad players are on 60K!


What have Gibbs and Szczesny ever done? Sod all. Mertesacker has been poor/average since joining.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNathan

Wow interesting figures

You forgot to mention Arsenal compete in the CL, Newcastle and Spurs aren't which imo makes a massive difference


Tottenham played in the Europa league. Irrespective of the quality of opposition, they still have to travel. Newcastle have a much smaller, cheaper squad - injuries will impact them in a similar way to whatever you assume the impact that partaking in the Champions League will have on Arsenal.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

Question for you: what do you make of Ivan Gazidas's assertion that Arsenal will be in a position to compete with City, United and Chelsea in two years' time? What do you think he means? Is it the hyper wages paid to Ashley Cole and Rooney and Aguero which he means we will finally be able to offer? Or is it the transfer fees, which we do not match at the moment? Is he waiting for certain contracts to run out so that we can free up resources? (I accept your point about resources being already there but they might be ring fencing player wages.)


Gazidis has no idea whether FFP will be implemented effectively or not, none of us do, so his predictions are based on pure theory.

FFP is extraordinarily complex, and UEFA are highly unlikely to implement their power to punish clubs who fall foul of the scheme. However, commercial revenues will play an important part in Arsenal's ability to compete under FFP. Unfortunately, Gazidis track record in this department is poor with Arsenal still making an operating loss under his management.

With the team's current steady decline, when the long-awaited sponsorship deals are up for renewal it's debatable whether Arsenal will be able to maximise them - or whether Gazidis is the right man to get the best deals possible.

Other clubs are running off into the distance, leaving Arsenal behind on every front.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMalaise

Ambushed ! Aha ! A.T. You were just fooling us all along, weren't you ? ( wink wink ). Saying you might quit blogging altogether, and then pleasantly surprising us with another of your devastating critiques of the incompetence that is rife at our club. Seriously though, it's a great service to us that you exposed this shameful wastage, and by using the club's OWN official figures - so no A.K.B. can challenge the authenticity of them.

Every Arsenal supporter should read these stats closely so they can see the truth - yes, the "Arsenal Truth" in fact. Well done, though I suspected the worst, and therefore am not that surprised*. (*What a thing to have to admit, eh ) ?

We can now more plainly see the extent of the damage Wenger and the board have done to our club. The sick irony is that they both think they're ( still ) doing a grand job !

"In Arsene we rust."

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSpectrum

You are horribly wrong.... Steve Rowley is one of the best in the business and Chelsea are after him... Besides, the wages of those who go out on loan are borne by the respective clubs. M. Arteta took a wage cut to 55k to come here from Everton..

there are so many others that are way off the mark ..


Only three of the players on my "list of losers" are out on loan, and two of those - Denilson and Bendtner - have been on stupid money for far longer than the four years I have calculated anyway.

I'm afraid salaries are not always paid by the clubs that take the player on loan.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPET

Even being a reserve player is a better deal then being a bank clerk,policeman,nurse etc.My God no wonder they are complacent even before they have played one first team game.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDanish Gooner

( quote ) "This evidence re-establishes the fact that Wenger’s inability to challenge for the title has little to do with being unable to compete financially, but everything to do with inefficient wage spend allied to poor player purchases and rank bad management ".

Cuts right to the heart of the matter, A.T. But will even THIS evidence convince some of the die hard Wengerites that their hero has conned them all these years ? You're doing your best to reveal the facts, but as the old saying goes "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink." Or should that be ; "You can lead a DONKEY to water but......"

" In Arsene we rust." ( with more proof of it every day! ).

I'm just putting the information out there, people can believe what they like.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSpectrum

HAHaHAHAHAhahahAha or should i say AAAAAAAAARRGGGHHH 80 grand a week for sicknote Rosicky,it must be the worst money spend ever,if he had any decency he would give it back.Imagine this, a CEO hires three new enployees(Diaby,Sicknote Rosicky and Flappyanski) after the first year they have been to work a combined 3 weeks put together THAT CEO WOULD BE SACKED AS SOON AS THE BOARD GOT A SNIFF OF IT,it just goes to show how that football is not what you call a real business it is doing its living in fantasyland and the fact that Wenger is still there is simply because it is football,in real life he would have been chucked a long time ago.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDanish Gooner

wages bill is the biggest problem that is affecting the club because now if u worldclass player u have to pay them the wages they want so that they can happy to play for the club and archieve more trophies

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterfoday

How reliable are these estimates? How did you come up with them?

Is it true that most the staff are just paid 1.5k a week to train players on 60k+ a week?


They're as close as can be without having access to Ivan Gazidis' computer. We know what the wage bill is for a fact, we know what the board is paid for a fact, so it's just about using common sense, and some research on individual player salaries, and piecing it together as accurately as possible.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGooner

Doesn't really matter if the numbers are spot on. The fact is Arsenal have a £143m wage bill and no world class players. So obviously the wage outlay is out of proportion to the players talents and it's all a complete waste of money. For what we're getting in terms of quiality and entertianment the wage bill should be £50m less and ticket prices halved.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTash-to-tash

I hate all this "real fans" support their teams blah blah blah.”

Real fans don't ignore the problems that hinder teams.
Real fans don't assume everything is alright and will fix itself.
Real fans don't slate other fans for wanting better.
Real fans are the ones that don't accept mediocrity* (* “we are 6th how is that a crisis blah blah” bullshit”).

......So said a poster over at "Le Grove." Good to know we're ALL real fans, isn't it ?

"In Arsene we rust."

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSpectrum

You must have been looking at my posts on le-grove over the last couple of years !!

I have been saying exactly the same, I agree 100%, we could have built our own Galactico's with that kind of money and our commercials would be going through the roof by now.

We don't need an enormous squad, we need a quality squad which we CAN afford without any sugar daddy !!

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBergkamp63

I find it sad that we still have an as yet to be determined method of play. i think without deciding that we cannot make appropriate choices for the team. we also no longer field players of sufficient quality of any one skill to mesh into the team no matter what method we play. we do not play a true possession style game. we do not press the opposition. yet, we some how do not use counter-attacking either?

i have yet to understand what our ethos is as a club over the past few years. it started to me once Henri said enough is enough and then it just keeps getting worse. there is no one left to keep Wenger driven to develop the pulse of the team. i think he is hoping the board is so pushed into a cul-de -sac that they relieve him of his post or provide him with the ability to truly start over. I really don't think the problem will end until the old guard is truly gone from the board or Gazidis and Wenger have left. Sad though. we could have made efforts to be more than a mid-level club.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGUNNER IN DC

It goes to prove that we are paying average layers wages that are way to high. Wenger has an economics degree, I wish he would use it. Personally I think the probkems we have now are Wenger's fault. He is tunnel-visioned and only wants to do things his way. Despite the past seven years being proved wrong he continues with his beliefs. We need someone else to take the club forward now and its time for Wenger to go. If not we will turn into what Liverpool are now and be lucky if we qualify for the Europa cup.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStuart H

Meta has been our best player along with Cazorla this year. The benefit of Gibbs is clear to all right minded people to see now Santos is playing. Where did you get these individual amounts from given that they are not published by the club. Plus of course you completely avoid any reasoning behind saying Giroud and Podolski are duds, like their first season, like the lack of service. Then saying Walcott is a dud. a dud who is the leading scorer and only player with pace, making a difference to every game he has come on to. But back to the money. Where have these 'facts' come from


They're estimates.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersilentstan

Holycraponacracker! That is frightening. Even if the figures are not spot on I doubt they will be miles off. We waste millions every year on duds. Cant get them off the wage bill either. Shocking mismanagement and again what we all suspected, we can have a really good squad with the money available if only someone else was in charge :(

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterparlourshair

An outstanding piece!

Well written and extremely revealing. Once again you have shown why many of us consider yours the best Arsenal blog out there. And also why we need you to continue writing.

Well done mate.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterClash

Come come come...say you're kidding! What the??? Now I'm liking Arsene even less. Economics Prof indeed. I'd like a comparison of our midfields average salary & that of every team that has done better than Arsenal in Europe over the last 4 seasons. I bet I'd be even more shocked. But em...I don't see why Walcott, Szeny & Arshavin are on that list. Just my thought.


I was once informed that the entire Fulham back five that got to the UEFA Cup final in 2010 was cheaper than Thomas Vermaelen.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterISA Okon D1st


Even if the players wage figures presented by AT are twice what they are in reality - does any one of you seriously suggest that this bunch of pretenders are worth even that after yesterdays complete shambles?

We simply must have a clear-out.

Starting with the architect of this madness.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDB10

Who do you think would be a better Manager than Wenger? Food for thought..... Not many first rate would put up with the financial constraints put in place by Gazidis and his lack of sponsorship nous.

I feel sorry for Wenger, we had the best side in the world at one point, he changed the premiership over the course of a few years. The trouble is with the board, as with most companies, success allows them to rest on their laurels and they get overtaken by the more dynamic.

Stan Kroenke should never have been allowed in, as the American sports franchises would testify to. We will do nothing other than rot under him.

As an addition, most footballers are now mercenary. We will never succeed without funds. It's sad, but true. This is the game we love, ruined by Man Shitty, Chelski and a few careers wrecked by QPR.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Lane

most of them are right but podolski and rosicky arnt on that much ????


Rosicky was already on £60-70k, but signed a new contract on 12 March 2012. With a new contract comes a pay rise.

Podolski's salary is gleaned from reports given by several (non-tabloid) high profile newspapers. They could be wrong of course, that's why I call it an estimate.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenternick the greej

"What have Gibbs and Szczesny ever done? Sod all. Mertesacker has been poor/average since joining."

Jesus. How about watching the games once or twice?


How about you start to realise the sort of players a club REALLY needs to compete for a major trophy.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTitmeister

Well put together. But although I know a few boycotting either games, merchandise or both etc I think we need a mass 'peaceful' protest - they control us inside the ground with flag side, banners, food, drink etc But we need a voice - to be heard peacefully but plain and simple. It can be organised but we need a good strong group and we need to know what we are all trying to achieve?


There is one, or so I've been told. It's being run by Arsenal Action - Sat, 1st December at 1:30pm outside the Cannon's Pub on Blackstock Road.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJB

So these are all estimates..and you think szczesny and gibss did sod all..ok

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterOneniltothearsenal

So if you got this from the 2011-12 accounts why are Podolski and Giroud included? No figures have ever been released that includes their time at the club.


The accounts showed a wage bill of £143.4m. During the summer, RVP, Song, Vela and Almunia left, Cazorla, Giroud and Podolski joined. I've therefore had to make an assumption that those who departed freed up wages for the new arrivals that replaced them. The fact I have to make these assumptions explains why it's called an estimate.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLittle Dutch

The 2012 accounts (p47) state we have 70 playing staff, but you have included 77. It also states 55 training staff, but you have included only 45. Not sure how accurate these "estimates" are...


That's because employees have subsequently joined and left after the accounts were published. My estimates are an estimated account of the staff we have now, fitted into the framework of the wage bill published in the EOY accounts. As of today, the wage bill could be higher or lower, but the equilibrium between staff leaving/joining indicates there shouldn't be a radical difference.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRomfordPele

I'm unsure at why everyone seems surprised by these figures, I think we've all been aware for a while we've been carrying average players on excessive wages. Players are overpaid, Sky TV money, Premiership, sugar daddies and champions league have ensured this is the case. My issue however is more the lack of judgement being shown by keeping some of these average players on the books rather than the money being paid. Players such as Santos, Djourou, Arshavin, Squillaci, Denilson and Bendtner aren't good enough to wear the shirt let alone be excessively paid to do so.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMagichat

I understand it's hard to shift people like Squillaci because other clubs wouldn't pay them that. Why do we need to wait for such players to run down their contracts? Is it possible to just buy out their contracts so we can open up squad space? Or would that be bad in a financial way for AFC?


You'd probably have to pay them in full - and Arsenal have so much dead wood at the club that the amount of money it would have to write-off would be outrageous. It's better to send the players on loan and hope they do well enough for the loaning club to eventually put a bid in - even if Arsenal has to pay the players' salary while they're gone.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlex

Don't use words like 'exposed' and 'further information' without first citing your sources and admitting you are basically making it all up.

If you want to be taken remotely seriously, that is!

I too would like to see the real figures. This article however is just mischief on your part. Perhaps prefacing it with 'I have made this up' or 'I have no evidence to support any of this' would be a start.

Keep up the good... well, the work.


Some elements are evidence-based, some aren't as I CLEARLY stated. You want me to go through every line and give a source?

Perhaps you should be grateful that somebody out there takes the time to expose the level of exploitation, manipulation and lies that the Arsenal board and manager are feeding you every year. After all, it's you they're robbing.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLimpar's Wand

Good read and I generally disagree with you, up until now at least.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohnny Gooner

Since when have Gibbs and Szecseny been average and let's be frank when Arshavin signed not one of you went "of he's distinctly average" most applauded it like a coup signing..then again everybody's a prophet in hindsight eh ? :)

Good article, little bit of overkill to add those two players to bump up the numbers on money wastage :)


They're both average in my opinion. For the salaries they're on they should be top class.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdyeruz

Arsenal will win 2 trophies this season. Make sure ‎​Ɣøû don't loose this

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersagiyom

The only 'evidence based elements' are the total and what we pay the board. I'll even give you the bendtner wage, even though that is some rumour started in the gutter press. You can even have djourou too, even though there is no evidence at all on that.

The rest, come on, you have made it up out of thin air. I'm grateful that you are trying, but when you so clearly have a prejudged motive in all this - which I would respectfully describe as 'wah wah wah I'm a spoilt baby and I want to cry because we finished 3rd not 1st wah wah wah' - then you should tone it down a touch. Until you have real evidence which you can rightly 'expose'.

Using words like 'exploitation' to describe arsenal and its fans is frankly hilarious. Even so, I am glad people like you put the effort in to find out the truth. There is so much secrecy it is good to know someone is trying. I would however encourage you to remember that we are certainly not the only club to make poor investments, judged with hindsight. I would also say stop being such an argumentative so and so! You are clearly biased on this, and have set out to make us look bad. That takes so much away from your good work that I'm not sure anything of value is left at all.

Next time, less emotion. More facts.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLimpar's Wand

agreee with majority of this. what do you think is the solution? arsene out?



November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMijal

i suppose you are waiting for a pat on the back for this useless article you wrote; utter gibberish at best: you are saying things not based on any FACT, all you are doing is projecting what you think the financial outlay of the club is.....the most ridiculous aspect of your silly and stupid article is some of the players you labelled as rubbish; i suppose you earned about 100 caps for England to make you such an expert on a player's career....whatever your opinion is keep it to yourself and your myopic shortsighted cohort....And you have the temerity to tell people who has bothered to read your thrash not to criticise or abuse you. You can abuse Wenger and the board even though you know next to nothing about them but no one is allowed to challenge your baseless and inaccurate article, YOU ARE A JOKE


Anyone is free to challenge me, shame you haven't.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDAMMI

Fantastic piece and as much as some AKB's will try and shoot you down, fantastic work! Keep it up mate!

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterThe Noise

Wenger is morally correct, i agree that there would be no honor in out-spending opersition in-order to win, but when you look at the actuary tables & see that we have a Nett spend that is less that 16 other teams in the league, it shows that were not even really spending what the average league club spends. Yes, it worked before when he first arrived at the club, but since than other clubs have gone ridiculous with their spendings, and Wenger has not proportionality increased his spending.

Having said that, you can only imagine what our 09/10 team could have gelled & developed into by now: Szczesny, Sagna, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Clichy, Song, Fabregas, Whilshere, Nasri, Walcott, RVP.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterm27try

Podolski is on 80k a week when he move from Beyern to Koln he took a huge wage cut to around 60k from 110k. You are right on the Rosicky wage unfortunately, the club felt he was some how to important to let go. Personally I would have let him go for free and bought Gourcuff.

The probs with our wage bill is or was project youth, when in full swing you have to take a wild punt on the potential of a player. This means you give these players more rises because the will potentialy sign more extensions. As a result by the time they hit 22 years old they are already on 40-60k to make sure he stays with the club whilst developing and warming the bench.

The Newcastle example is the perfect example of what you can do by buying more established players (22 to 27 year olds) than buying young (17-21 year olds). For example you buy Cazorla 27 years old, give him a 4-5 year deal on 70-80k a week which he's payed until he's 31-32 years old when he will take a small rise if he takes a new deal because of his age.

My first 11 would be Szesney, Sagna, Kos, Vermealen, Gibbs, Diaby, Wilshere, Cazorla, Chamberlain, Podolski, Walcott then there are three obvious improvements you could make to make this side even stronger LB, DCM, RW my Choice wold be Baines, an Essien type player, ans Christian Erikson. And why we don't play Podolski at the centre of the attacking 3.

I think we need to have a clear out of these almost rans like Fabianski, Mannone Bendtner, Djourou, Rosicky, Chamakh, Santos, Denilson, Arshavin and park and replace these with 2-3 established top international players that would go straight into the first 11.

It's been a tough 7 years my fellow goners but you can't ignore the fact that we have a lot of dead wood plus the fact that if we go in for a top player City and Chavski will just double our bid. We need to sort out our other issues before the squad becomes sorted.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJames

It doesn't really matter what individuals are paid. Absolute fact Wage bill is 143M for those bags of shite that call themselves footballers and managers.

7M a year for a manger who who has won fuck all in seven years. 49M for NOTHING. 2M a year for a CEO who turned in a 31M operating loss. That's my money guys - or at least £3k of it - oh and yours as well.

In ANY other business they would have gone long ago. But this business is different. Its called "take your money and put it in my pocket and give you fuck all in return" and they are VERY good at it.

Enough already, I don't support a club any more I support a business and ALL that business wants is my money and I'm done.

I've had my ST a very long time but just cant see myself renewing next year. Still there will always be a 'real supporter' queuing up behind me to buy it..

Or will there.. I don't know about anyone else but the tide could be turning I think?

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRolling Stone

In wenger we rust

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPhemmy

very poor job of interpreting the numbers. some of which are wrong. listing gibbs as a "loser" is childish. walcott has bin in the top 4 assisting mids in the division for last four years. he's our highest scorer and he's only started once. what do you mean he's average? how much do you want to pay for that?

and gazadis is speaking of the coming to an end of long term contracts that were signed with lower risk to cover stadium repayment period (among other commercial ventures) at a lower income to us. he's basically saying that the risk factor has decreased and thus can now engage and negotiate on different terms. terms that put more money in arsenal's pocket. it has little to do with ffp. we will literally have more cold hard cash. the kind of deals that put us in the financial league of the man-u's of this world.

im not happy about the way things stand but you really shouldn't be writing if you don't fully understand what you are talking about. its very poor blogging.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterles

Would it be worth keeping Park if only for the revenue brought in from Asia? That would clearly be the only reason he was bought! He doesn't fit in to a youth policy and has barely played a game since he has moved. The transfer also cost us a signing, I think it may have been Hazard from Lille as they weren't happy with our capture of Park when it had all but been agreed he'd sign for them... If only he had!


I also though he was a cynical signing - bought for shirts, rather like Junichi Inamoto in 2001/02.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJames Gooner

Nice article however it simplifies thing too much eg the perfomance of players r affected by lots of thing some of them being unpridictable eg injuries, lack of play time etc would u simple pack off players of potntial simple be cause of injury? Remember RVP being injured an inconsistent doe to dat for 7 yrs yet being the pivot of the team last year or shipping of wilshire becos he had been injured for over a year. Yes some player hav been flops n like u rigHtfully getting rid of non performers is easier said than done eg for how long have we been trying to get rid of bentner without suCcess due to wage cuts as well as getting some reasonable returns. Also remember that the name and status as a club heavily affects the xpectd wage demands of prospective plAyer interests. Again what will and do we as supporters say if we go for players within a certain wage range which we identify as defining the player as a non quality. It is good to be passionate about our club how ever in our bid to pationately find solutions to our problem of no trofies fail to see the clearer pic and some positives the team has had over those same years. It is easy to point fingers during times like these

Yet at the very begining of this season we was sooo much potentiAl for the club n us as supporters

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterpapa kwadwo

Thanks for posting this. It helps to get the message across that Wenger is not some kind of financial genius keeping Arsenal in the Champions League on a shoestring. All he does is achieve what he ought to for the money he spends.

Wenger and Gazidis go on a lot about finances but that is just a distraction from what really matters, stuff like tactics, coaching, leadership and team selection. Judging from the faults in the team that keep recurring season after season after season Wenger is not doing his job in those areas.

If Wenger won't wake up and do his job then the club needs to replace him. The budget at his disposal is vast and there are plenty of decent managers who could produce better results from a wage bill of £143m. Jurgen Klopp isn't going to say no to £7m a year is he?

PS Some of the maths didn't quite add up - the total for reserve coaches is out by a factor of 10 - but that does not detract from your points about the sheer waste of Wenger's bonkers wage structure and his utter failure to use the club's vast resources to maximum effect.


Sorry, sub-total error - have had to make adjustments. I have been sent lots of emails with links to salary articles etc., so the blog is being constantly adapted.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJed

kit man 1k a week :O easy money

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commentergooner

Firstly the word estimate need to be explained to a few people. Cambridge on-line dictionary defines it as : to guess the cost, size, value, etc. of something.

Simply put these figures are guesses and should be treated as guesses. Some may be based on newspaper reports and they may be made to add up to the sum of the wage bill but they are guesses nevertheless.

Secondly, Arsene Wenger is not in charge of wages or contracts of players. This is a role taken by Tom Fox and Ivan Gazidis. People accusing Wenger of mismanagement should turn their attention elsewhere.

Thirdly, wages paid to the squad have a pretty direct relationship to the finishing position. If, as some on here are asserting Arsenal waste money why is it that we generally perform to our level when it comes to wages spent.

e.g. Year Rank for Wages spent Finishing position
2004-5 3 2
2005-6 3 4
2006-7 3 4
2007-8 3 3
2008-9 4 4
2009-10 5 3
2010-11 4 3


It's too simplistic to say wages = success, as Chelsea were left trailing behind Arsenal, Spurs and Newcastle in the Premier League last season. Besides, why should Arsenal pay Wenger £7m pa for him to achieve the absolute bare minimum?

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBBobBobBob

All clubs have got highly paid players who do very little to justify astronomical wages.

Jim (A Spurs fan)


True, but at Arsenal it applies to virtually every player.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJIm

Can't take this article seriously. No name attached as the owner of the article, just a pen name. No explanation of where the figures are cited from. Nothing cited to prove Arsene Wenger decides how much a player gets paid. No criteria listed for the players suggested as average and a waste of money. Goes on and on.

It's just another frustrated Gooner spouting manufactured comments to fit his own agenda and personal dislike of Wenger. Quite sad and disappointing.

Yes of course Wenger has made mistakes, but these mistakes get emphasized when we lose. He's largely done a great job with what he is given to perform the job - only a few elite managers can maybe equal it and I doubt they could exceed his performance, but none would probably take the challenge given the limited resources the club has to offer to the manager.

He's Arsenal's best asset. Once he goes, there goes your scouting network and most of the players who want to play for Arsenal for the peanuts we offer them. It's not just me saying this, every football pundit as well - domestic or foreign. If Arsenal football club started paying players in the £100-200k range, I guarantee Nasri and RVP would still be playing with us including other players we've missed out on like Hazard. We need to be realistic - it's not rocket science.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterErol

This is pure speculation, it's a load of baloney. Unless you have seen the exact wage breakdown of the staff at the club, which you haven't, you cannot possibly make any kind of accurate statement on the payroll.
Sorry, but that is the truth of it.


An estimate can still be highly accurate. We know the directors pay, we know the pension costs, we know kit men, physios, coaches and scouts are paid a pittance compared to the senior players.

Remove all that information and whatever is left has to be what's spent on the first team - from there it's just a matter of how you divvy it all up. The total wage bill is a complete waste of money whichever way you look at it.

November 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDavinder

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