Premier League chief makes transfer claim to impact Arsenal, Tottenham, Chelsea and West Ham


Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea, West Ham, Crystal Palace and Fulham’s plans for the summer transfer window will be impacted by the financial fallout of Covid-19 across the football pyramid, Premier League chief executive Richard Masters has claimed.

Clubs across all divisions have been dealing with reduced revenue due to the absence of supporters attending matches and the suspension of sport in the first lockdown in the United Kingdom last March.

Several Premier League clubs have recently revealed losses in the financial year for 2019/20.

For the financial year ending in May 2020, Arsenal announced losses of £47.8million.

The club lost £14m in matchday revenue, £6m in broadcasting and other commercial losses and £34m due to a deferral of broadcasting revenues into the next financial year, all of which were as a result of Covid-19.

In November 2020, Spurs announced financial losses of £63.9m for the year ending June 30, 2020. Even more concerningly, the club forecasted a possible loss of £150m in 2020-21 when the financial impact of the coronavirus is more likely to take effect.

Meanwhile, in December, Chelsea announced a £39m drop in revenue for the year ending June 30, 2020.

And Masters admits that the financial situations the clubs are in will have an impact in the summer.

“There have been very significant financial losses, not just in the Premier League but throughout the football pyramid,” Masters explained to Premier League Productions.

“Towards the end of this season, we’ll get towards £2billion lost since the start of the pandemic in matchday revenue and broadcast revenue.

“We’ve kept the show on the road despite all of this. Clubs have continued to invest in competitive matchday squads and also the Premier League has continued to make good on all of its contributions throughout the pyramid and wider football.

“But I think the ramifications are that ultimately if there’s less money coming into football, then there’ll be less money going out in the short term.”

Chelsea spent the best part of £200m on new transfers in the summer.

This included spending lavishly on Kai Havertz, Timo Werner, Edouard Mendy, and Ben Chilwell, all while having already signed Hakim Ziyech before the first lockdown.

Arsenal and Tottenham were more reserved in their spending, although the Gunners did sign Thomas Partey for around £45m.

West Ham’s most prominent signings were Said Benrahma, Tomas Soucek, and Vladimir Coufal, while they also added Jese Lingard on loan in January. They also offloaded club-record signing Sebastien Haller to recoup some funds.

Meanwhile, Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta also commented that the club do not know how the financial losses will impact their spending, and his comments are likely echoed by managers throughout the league.

“We don’t know yet because we have so many things to do,” said Arteta. “We have people on loan, people finishing contracts. There has been a lot going on in the last two transfer windows; the amount of things that had to be done was probably unprecedented and it will be again in the summer.

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“We are trying to put a plan together to see the resources that we have, how much we want to improve, how we’re going to do it and at what cost. There are so many factors, it’s not just about one thing or an [financial] amount.

“It’s about the project and, timewise, how to build it is going to take some effort from everybody and we know that. The challenging moments that we are facing at the moment is making it even harder.”





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