BMcKenna wrote:For me, the new era really begins when we're not hamstrung with the debts of the stadium and all income can be completely reinvested in new playing staff. I know its more manageable now but a sizeable chunk still goes to paying the debt + interest. We would not have been able to buy Cazorla, Giroud and Podolski a few seasons ago without offloading RVP and others first, so its a positive step, but we're not quite there. The stadium has been dictating our financing for almost the past ten years and unfortunately it has shown in the lack of trophies.
Economically speaking, it is better to haemorrhage some top players and fund the stadium repayment faster so we can reap the rewards quicker. With this we tread a thin line with not securing a Champions League spot and it doesn't really get closer than last summer. Most will agree the stadium was a necessary item moving forward, but we have to understand the negatives this provides in the short term. On top of this having to live within our means in case FFP comes in means our job is all the more difficult.
So the real new era begins at the start of the 2014/2015 season, very little left to pay for the stadium, new commercial deals secured which will vastly improve our buying power and also help pay off the stadium plus FFP might be in full force. Right now is simply a transitional period and if we can hold on to some of the key players plus our talented youth, we can hit 2014/2015 with full might. Sounds like dour thinking for the next couple of seasons but we can still challenge for a trophy, just means PL and CL are out of reach realistically unless everyone else collapses and we play out of our skin.
The stadium bond repayment is a fixed flat rate of 20-25m per season over 25 years = 2031.
We HAVEN'T been paying off the stadium ahead of schedule as we are simply not able to do so without incurring substantive punative penalties - the investors require their pound of flesh one way or the other.
Economically speaking it would have been far less dangerous (and far more effective), had we got off our asses and strived to improve our commercial revenues to at least cover the debt servicing on the bonds = 25m per year.
IMO this should have become our primary 'business' strategy as soon as we had converted the stadium debt into the long term bonds at the fixed rate. We've had a decade to do so and done basically nothing.
This transition period effectively began in '08,
& has thus far seen off the entire inaugural generation of players in the internal youth development project,
bar possibly JD & Walcott.
We allowed 1 squad to break apart in order to accomodate the project,
and we are now building a new squad 5 seasons later,
but in doing so we are NOT following the blueprint of those past 5 seasons.
That said IF this IS the start of a new era of evolution as I posted earlier,
then we should continue to see the team strengthened as we transition further towards having a fully functioning product in time for the new commercial deals.
We have the velvet glove but we still as yet lack the iron fist within.