Aston Villa – Lost In The Supermarket

March 24, 2015

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“For a club of Aston Villa’s rich history, the past few years have been profoundly depressing, as they have spent most of that time at the wrong end of the Premier League table, desperately trying to avoid relegation. Their managerial merry-go-round has failed to improve matters, merely bringing their own version of doom (Alex McLeish) and gloom (Paul Lambert). This has been matched by a dismal performance off the pitch with the club bleeding money through some hefty losses, financed by the American owner Randy Lerner pumping vast sums of money into Aston Villa – with no tangible success. Little wonder that this toxic combination has caused Lerner to put the club up for sale.” The Swiss Ramble


Swansea City – A Design For Life

March 19, 2015

“The past few years have been pretty successful for Swansea City. After becoming the first Welsh club to gain promotion to the Premier League in 2011, they have since firmly established themselves in England’s top tier, finishing 11th, 9th and 12th in the three seasons since then. During this period, they have also won the Capital One Cup, which qualified them for the Europa League, where they reached the knockout stage before being eliminated by Napoli. In the process, they have continued to follow a prudent financial strategy As the club explained after promotion: ‘Our long term goals will cater for Swansea City remaining as a top flight club, but not in any way that puts the company’s financial stability at risk. This remains paramount in our management philosophy.’” The Swiss Ramble


Liverpool – A Show Of Strength

March 11, 2015

“It was so close. Although Liverpool supporters would naturally have been disappointed that Brendan Rodgers’ team narrowly missed out on securing title winning glory in the 2013/14 season, objectively speaking their surge to second place in the Premier League represented great progress. Not only did they improve significantly from the previous season’s seventh, but they also qualified for the Champions League, a competition that has played an important part in the Reds’ famous history.” The Swiss Ramble


Liverpool – A Show Of Strength

March 9, 2015

“It was so close. Although Liverpool supporters would naturally have been disappointed that Brendan Rodgers’ team narrowly missed out on securing title winning glory in the 2013/14 season, objectively speaking their surge to second place in the Premier League represented great progress. Not only did they improve significantly from the previous season’s seventh, but they also qualified for the Champions League, a competition that has played an important part in the Reds’ famous history.” The Swiss Ramble


Norwich City – East Of The Sun, West Of The Moon

March 6, 2015

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“The 2013/14 season was a mixed bag for Norwich City, as another good year from a financial perspective was completely overshadowed by the results on the pitch. As the annual report stated, it was ‘a disappointing season for the club, culminating in relegation to the Championship following three successive years in the Premier League.’ Although Norwich had arguably outperformed the previous season by finishing in a comfortable 11th position in the Premier League, it must have been strange to supporters to see the club record a £9 million profit before tax (up more than 700%) and further reduce debt instead of spending more in an attempt to avoid relegation.” The Swiss Ramble


Arsenal – Half The World Away

March 1, 2015

“Arsenal’s half-year results for the six months ended 30 November 2014. Profit before tax of £11.1 million, compared to a loss in 2013 of £2.2 million, an improvement of £13.3 million. Profit after tax only improved by £7.3 million from £2.8 million to £10.1 million, as 2013 benefited from a tax credit of £5 million. Profit before tax of £11.1m was almost entirely from the football business £10.8 million, as there was ‘minimal activity’ from property development £0.3 million.” The Swiss Ramble


The Premier League TV Deal – Master And Servant

February 25, 2015

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“Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore is a man accustomed to dealing with large numbers, but even he struggled to believe just how much his negotiating team had secured in the latest auction for the rights to broadcast his ‘product’ in the UK. The amount was an astonishing £5.136 billion for the three-year cycle starting in the 2016/17 season, which represented a 70% increase on the current £3 billion deal. This was a lot more than most analysts had expected, especially given that the current domestic TV deal had itself increased by 70% compared to the previous agreement. The magnitude of the increase was a testament to Scudamore’s ability to generate vast sums of money for the 20 Premier League clubs, but we could have done without his false modesty: ‘Am I surprised? Of course, the little old Premier League, doing quite well here.’” Swiss Ramble


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