Arsenal takes £ 120million loan from Bank of England to allay Covid-19 cash flow concerns | Arsenal

Arsenal took out a £ 120million loan from the bank of england in an effort to alleviate the cash flow problems that have built up during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The loan, which is due to be repaid by the end of May with an undisclosed amount of interest, is designed to cover losses and will have no effect on Mikel Arteta’s winter transfer plans. It was provided by the bank’s Covid Corporate Finance Facility, which helps organizations that meet very specific investment criteria and are known to make a significant contribution to the economy. Tottenham Hotspur and the Football Association are the only other football institutions having made use of the diet.

Arsenal’s match income, in particular, took a huge hit during the pandemic. In 2018-19, that represented a quarter of their earnings, an unmatched proportion among the elite, and stood at around £ 96million. The return of 2,000 supporters in recent matches against Rapid Vienna and Burnley has been little compensation.

The search for the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust predicted last April that the club could lose £ 144million over the next 12 months if fans are left out, and commercial revenue streams are also expected to have taken a hit without a pre-season tour. While the short-term nature of the bank’s loan may raise eyebrows, the club expect to have no problem repaying it.

Owner Kroenke Sports & Entertainment helped shore up the club’s finances by issuing a loan in July that paid off fixed rate bonds issued during the construction of the Emirates Stadium.

It’s a welcome boost at a time when Arsenal are looking to shake off financial grindstones. One of them, the playmaker in exile Mesut Özil, will see his future decided “in the next few days”, according to Arteta, even if the Arsenal manager admits that he does not know how or when the saga around him will end.

Mikel Arteta with Mesut Özil last February. The manager says he wants to “try to find the best solution for everyone”. Photograph: John Walton / PA

There is no doubt that uil, whose contract expires this summer, has played his last game for the club and all parties are keen to emerge from a sour relationship which has cast a costly shadow. Özil has been linked with Fenerbahce and DC United in this transfer window although his agent Erkut Sogut said on Wednesday that the “player’s priority is to stay” until the end of the season.

“I say we’ll decide what happens in the next few days,” Arteta said when asked if Özil can stay at the club. “I don’t know what’s going to happen. Obviously now he is free to negotiate with other clubs. We will be discussing internally the best solution for him in the near future, obviously with the player and the agent as well, and try to find the best solution for everyone.

The logistics around Özil at the start this month will likely be complicated given that none of his suitors would be able to match his weekly salary of £ 350,000. A simpler option could be for the former Germany international to commit to a move after his deal ends, but that would mean Arsenal would have to keep an omitted player from Arteta’s Premier League and Europa League teams in October.

“If anything has been sorted out this month, it’s because it’s good for both sides, it’s good for Mesut and his future, and it’s good for the club,” said Arteta. “If so, we will move forward. If not, the player will stay here.

Özil is available for the FA Cup third round match with Newcastle on Saturday, although his involvement seems unthinkable. Thomas Partey could return from the thigh injury that kept him from playing for 45 minutes of the action of the past two months, although Arteta has suggested he could be kept cool for the Premier League meeting with Crystal Palace Thursday.

While Özil’s fate is a relatively short-term issue for Arteta, the manager is increasingly worried about the prospects of keeping Folarin Balogun at Arsenal. The much-loved striker’s contract is in effect in July and several clubs are reportedly interested in signing him. Arteta suggested that any stumbling block lies at the feet of the player’s representatives.

“You need three parties to make a deal,” he said. “Of course the club want to make a deal, the manager wants to make a deal, the player wants to stay and I’m not sure about the agent.”

Source link

Comments are closed.