Evening folks. I’ll keep this one brief for a simple reason: The season is over and the silly season has yet to begin in earnest. But I thought I’d poke my head round the blogging door anyway.
In fact, the transfer window opened today with a whimper – perhaps because it’s precisely now when players and managers head off to their sunbeds, leaving us to devour the titbits offered by the back pages and footballers’ agents. It’s not much to go on.
It’s also deadline day for season ticket holders to renew, a fearsome time when 40,000 people take an unpleasant seasonal financial hit. Was I ever considering not renewing it? Pah! Despite a season of decidedly mixed performances, and it being a hell of a lot of money, going to the football is as fun as it ever was and it’s a very difficult thing to quit when you’ve been doing it, as I have as a season ticket holder, for 15 years. I’ll be there again, of course.
Something of interest though: Some details on the TV and prize money have come out, revealing what we all knew already and explaining perhaps why Arsenal sank Â£16m into Arshavin’s purchase in January – that the Champions League remains a crucial cash cow for the big four.
The Â£23.4m we earned from the Champions League is the fundamental difference in TV revenue between us and fifth-placed Everton. That’s a hell of a lot of extra dough.
What is a little odd is that, while Chelsea earned a little more from the Premier League (thanks to finishing a place above us), we earned Â£3m less than them in the Champions League despite reaching the same stage, and playing an extra qualifying round. It being late in the evening, I’ve yet to work out how that might be. Something to do with coefficients? Seeding? I’m not sure.
It’s also instructive to see how little the Uefa Cup brings in. For a competition that, from next season, could require 19 games to win, the financial rewards are surprisingly feeble. Any surprise that Villa and the Spuds threw the towel in there?
Anyway, here’s hoping we get drawn against Lokomotiv Plovdiv or someone like that in the qualifiers.
Right, that’s it. Who will we be signing tomorrow, eh?
The answer to that last question is clearly ‘nobody’ seeing that I’m a month early. Got slightly ahead of myself there.