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Our Future Finances

By Chris Butler :  01/12/2009 :  Comments (25) :
The problem in my opinion over the last two years is our lack of plans for the future. We failed to capitalize on our 5th place over the last two seasons. In my opinion this is worrying as it proves we are not making process and this season our vulnerabilities have been exposed that have been there for the last two seasons.

People that have been criticizing Bill Kenwright are the same that were praising him last season. David Moyes is to blame for the four poor signings in the summer. Fellaini and Bily are the classic examples of big money signings that have been overall disappointing.

We are unable to compete with clubs arguably smaller than us, such as Sunderland, Aston Villa, and Spurs. Until recently, our record signing was far below other clubs. We have very poor corporate facilities for a big club. Very rarely do we ever sell out; in 2008-09 we never sold out in any Premier League game or cup game.

Obviously stadium capacities do play their part but for a club that finished 5th we had awful attendances, lower than about nine other clubs. We averaged about 35,000 last season which is poor.

I have recently noticed with Aston Villa who came to Goodison and only brought 1800 fans which is poor for a club of their size. I believe this is down to a few major factors. A lot of seats in Goodison have some sort of restricted view. The last two rows in Lower Gwladys are severely restricted due to the roof and the fact that standing occurs there regularly.

Also in my opinion most of match-going fans are in their late 20s or older. Clubs in the Premier League are finding that there are fewer people going to the match (bar Manchester United and Liverpool). In my opinion, the dwindling crowds are down to a number of factors.

As you get older and get more responsibilities you have less time on your hands and less money in your pocket usually. Football was always for the working class, anyone could enjoy it. Nowadays watching football is just too expensive in my opinion.

And the numerous avenues of highlights and live football also cause dwindling attendances. That the Premier League have complained about live showings of 3 o'clock kick offs is affecting attendances is ironic. This from the organisation who has allowed Sky to take a mafia like grip over Premiership fixtures, changing matches such as Everton v Chelsea two seasons ago after tickets had been put on sale for both supporters.

The profit the clubs actually make from Sky is minimal. I firmly believe with no younger generation to either play or support our football clubs, English football will die.

Reader Comments

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Michael Kenrick
Editorial Team
1   Posted 01/12/2009 at 14:23:21

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Odd statement at the end there, Chris: "The profit the clubs actually make from Sky is minimal."

Everton just announced cash received from television was up £2 million to £48.6 million, reflecting a record number of 17 live televised Premier League games involving Everton. And that represents a whopping 61% of turnover.

Although Everton didn’t actually make a profit, without the TV money they would be making massive losses — football as it is would simply not exist.
Jay Harris
2   Posted 01/12/2009 at 14:32:38

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you make a few good points there but as Michael said you are totally off the target with TV income.

I have banged on for years about the fact that Spurs get around 40 million a year compared to our 3 million a year in commercial income.

The fact that we have not exploited our 5th place finishes and a Cup final is not Moyes fault.

The board should have a financial and marketing plan in place and should overachieve it in harmony with what has been going on on the pitch (this season so far excluded).

Moyes put his famous "A" and "B" list to the board early last season.

Guess what we missed out on all those targets until Johnson was sold.

This season we missed out on a number of targets until Lescott was sold then picking up the scraps.

IMO you cannot blame Moyes for that.
Paul Gladwell
3   Posted 01/12/2009 at 14:32:00

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Chris, Liverpool struggle to sell the away end out these days too,teams like Birmingham who you would think would sell their allocation never, so to say Villa brought 1800 because of the restricted views is rubbish in my eyes.
Alot of people are not as flush these days and the added fact you can see any game you want on the arab channel in the pub is in my opinon the biggest reason for the rise of more casual support and I feel this would have been a big and serious problem if we had move to Kirkby.
Chris Butler
4   Posted 01/12/2009 at 15:34:20

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Micheal, what I meant was that not a lot of this has gone down to the team. The sky profits have gone mostly down to paying years old debts according to someone I spoke to. Sky will pay more for bigger games such as the derby. That's why Manchester United have made about I think roughly £6 million more than other teams around them due to long cup runs.
Chris Briddon
5   Posted 01/12/2009 at 15:54:48

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Jay, but that was one of the reasons for needing a new stadium as the corporate facilities are pretty poor compared to a many other grounds in the premiership, and this is where that extra income comes from these days.

I mean come on, some of our hospitality at the moment consists of a tent in the car park.
Jay Harris
6   Posted 01/12/2009 at 15:58:55

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Chris you’re wrong again.

The bulk of Spurs commercial income is not hospitality it is other commercial activities such as merchandising.

Nevertheless I fundamentally dispute that Kirkby would have increased our hospitality income anyway.

Larry Boner
7   Posted 01/12/2009 at 16:02:02

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How in hell to you work out that Tottenham are a smaller club than Everton, or Villa,or Sunderland for that matter ???
Spurs,Villa and Sunderland all had higher average attendances last season.
Spurs have been progressing a plan for a ground move that gives them a 60,000 capacity stadium right next door to WHL, working hand in hand with Haringey council. They currently have a waiting list for season tickets of 26,000+, their ground NOW generates a £1.2 million revenue every game from the 120 boxes they have all round the ground, completely sold out every season.
They have a forward looking board that will probably see them into the CL next season.
AV have a chairman who supports his manager, they have progressively improved their ground over the last 15 yrs (while we have done nothing)
Sunderland a number of years ago built a new stadium,their manager .
is fully supported by the board.
we have a waiting list of ZERO for season tickets, the club currently advertising half season tickets, the board has NO plans or ambition to move the club forward (apart from the Kirby disaster), the board does NOT support the managers ambitions so we find ourselves in the current predicament, near to the bottom of the PL, NO plans to move the club towards a new stadium,but going cap in hand to LFC and LCC for a ground share.
There is no more fervent Evertonian than myself, following the club for over 50 yrs, but the current attitude of fellow blues really leaves me cold, we were a BIG, big club, once, now we are also rans prepared to give up 130 yrs of history for a poorly thought out shithole in Kirby.
We have had the chance over the last 2 or 3 seasons to miraculously break into the CL positions, with a little support from the board, whose job, lets face it, is to do exactly that, they did not do it and they never will.
We have a wonderful club with a fantastic tradition, run by idiots, we are not a small club and never will be, but other clubs are rapidly moving ahead of us, just as Liverpool did all those years ago. Wake up Blues the warning bells are sounding, if you think Arteta or Jagielka are going to change what is happening to this club both off feild and on the playing side you are sorely mistaken, just watch what happens in the January transfer window.
Rant over and apologies to anyone I have offended.
Mike Oates
8   Posted 01/12/2009 at 17:12:09

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Totally agree with you Larry - I to have supported the blues for the last 50 years and we have over the last 20 years lost the plot completely at Board level.

Jay - please get your facts right , merchandising brought Spurs £7m , but matchday Corporate Hospitality and Sponsorship ie Mansion,MBNA etc brought in £27m , and gate receipts for the Premiership and the Cups brought in £28m . The rest of their £113m income was from Sky - £45m and others £6m £6m .

By comparison Everton got £48m off Sky and had a truly wonderful gate and roughly sponsorship/corporate income of £30m - some £25m below Spurs.

Our income was £78m theirs £113m and they were disappointed as it was lower than their year before !!.

As Larry said they have 26000 on their season ticket waiting list.

SPURS ARE WAY BIGGER THAN US - dont kidding ourselves . London will always attract better corporate support and London prices are way higher than ours . I live in the South and I can get Everton ticket for £32 , Portsmouth charge me £38 and West Ham £45 . Get our bloody prices up !!!!
James Bowman
9   Posted 01/12/2009 at 17:16:38

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I’m totally with Larry on that one. The board has mortgaged and sold every asset possible whilst at the same time; put our executive clients in a tent in the car park. They couldn’t do a "Leeds" if they wanted too! I’d like to see this team fully fit and flying, I think those days are coming and on our day we can beat the best. They could have sorted the restricted views, built a new stand and corporate facilities, it’s not rocket science. Unfortunately, any success will only fall away again through lack of ambition by the board.
Roger Domal
10   Posted 01/12/2009 at 17:49:39

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Can’t see the forest for the trees? AV is the best team in the 2nd city in the land with a non-crumbling stadium, and an owner who has some money. Spurs have a lot more going for them than we do. Let’s face it, if Everton were on the market and you had the money, would you even get out of the car to look at the stadium?
Ste Traverse
11   Posted 01/12/2009 at 17:54:17

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The one and only idea these beauts ’running’ our club have to raise money is to flog our best players. Simply unacceptable.
Chris Butler
12   Posted 01/12/2009 at 17:49:02

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Larry, until many gave up, Liverpool and Everton took hoardes everywhere. We averaged a lot higher attendances when anyone could afford to go to the match. Liverpool being the poorest city in England will explain something to you Larry. If we charged a tenner a ticket we’d fill a 55,000 stadium each week mate. For a club to finish 5th 2 years running suggests they are a reasonably good side.

To Mike Oates where did that money go to mate. I just worry about the future. Not meaning to offend anyone here but your girlfriend or wife isn't going to be happy you spending vast amounts on going to the match. When you could get something for her or your kids for a lot cheaper. With games consoles the fact you can record these matches on Sky and rewatch them as if they were live it leads many people to believe what's the point going the match...

Nick Entwistle
13   Posted 01/12/2009 at 18:35:29

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I stopped reading when it said fans were praising Bill last season, and that Bily had been disappointing.
Not sure what you’re wanting for £10m but he looks good for that amount.
Jay Harris
14   Posted 01/12/2009 at 18:32:33

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you’re right but I’m pretty certain Merchandising was 10 million last year and hospitality and sponsorship was split and I recall hospitality being lower than I expected.

Larry spot on.

I think we can all agree Spurs are better run financially than us even with the London weighting.

That for me would be the ideal new owners.

People with a vested interest in making EFC a better finacial model rather than some billionaires plaything.
Kunal Desai
15   Posted 01/12/2009 at 19:10:03

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To put in simple terms a hot dog stand is probably run better than EFC!
Louis Platt
16   Posted 01/12/2009 at 19:07:34

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Hopefully this formatting will work... basically it shows the club’s operating loss and turnover since the Premier League was formed. In the past ten years the club have made an operating profit once. I was unable to source the the 1994/1995 accounts.
Year Operating Profit/Loss Turnover
1992-93 £1,361,310 £7,993,731
1993-94 -£138,690 £8,884,203
1995-96 £1,445,560 £17,004,370
1996-97 £3,162,475 £18,881,961
1997-98 -£4,432,942 £22,664,943
1998-99 -£13,710,366 £25,455,723
1999-00 -£8,907,110 £28,140,859
2000-01 -£12,790,712 £32,852,568
2001-02 -£10,312,000 £38,231,000
2002-03 -£9,205,000 £46,781,000
2003-04 -£14,001,000 £44,672,000
2004-05 £6,000 £59,953,000
2005-06 -£8,370,000 £58,123,000
2006-07 -£10,943,000 £51,412,000
2007-08 -£5,540,000 £75,650,000
2008-09 -£6,700,000 £79,700,000
Chris Briddon
17   Posted 01/12/2009 at 19:05:24

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Jay - you say without the London weighting as if it only affects a couple of issues.
The fact is that for teams like Spurs it makes all the difference in the world, as outside the UK, London is the only place that counts for anything, hence Chelsea, Spurs, Arsenal even West Ham can attract investment and big name players due to its appeal.

The Everton board have NO money, therefore there is a limit to whatever can be achieved with the club. Its ok saying that we missed an opportunity when we finished 4th, but you only get the CL riches for reaching the group stages of which there was no guarantee - so we had to take a big risk on assuming a knock-out round win first.

I would love rich owners with a vested interest in EFC but know that this is a fairly slim possibility.

As for Villa, well deadly Doug spend years not putting anything into tthe team (even player sales money) to redevelop Villa Park, as such the stadium is in a good state and they also have an owner with a bit of cash (although even he accepts they need a new richer one to move further!)

I am not happy that my club have no money and struggle to compete financially, but on the other hand, I am also proud that most other clubs in the prem & outside look at us as an example of what can be achieved without a billionaire to invest stacks of cash, as we’ve punched well above our weight for a number of years - the downside of our limited resources is that occasionally we will have times like now, when we are crippled by injuries and we struggle to compete, although I have every confidence (unlike many others on here) that this is only a short term blip. For goodness sake, Liverpool can’t compete with only 2 players missing and we’ve had about 10 at times this season.

With a full squad we can compete on the pitch with all but 2 or 3 of the premiership, unfortunately at the time of writing amid further injury issues with Yobo missing and Distin & Rodwell doubtful for tomorrow night I am beginning to get fed up of waiting for that time to arrive.

We haven’t become a bad team overnight, and we were good enough to finish 5th last season & the season before so why are all the doom & gloom mongers suddenly claiming the managers tactics are crap andf half the squad (at least) are terrible and not fit enough to play in the conference.
Jay Harris
18   Posted 01/12/2009 at 19:31:12

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It looks like the only years we made a profit despite significant increases in revenues apart from the Rooney sale were the years when PJ was in charge.

That makes interesting reading.

Doddy please take note!!
Chris Butler
19   Posted 01/12/2009 at 19:48:54

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Mike Oates, raising prices wouldn’t raise revenue. Charge £45 and I won’t go. We would end up with barely 15,000 in the ground. Plus no potential younger supporters. The fact is Spurs know their fans are willing to pay. Everton's support has dwindled since prices have gone up, similar to Manchester Citys. Birmingham City charge extortionate fees for match tickets and that's why they can’t even fill it for Aston Villa.
Gavin Ramejkis
20   Posted 01/12/2009 at 20:06:24

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Chris I’m not just picking you out but as you were the last to mention it, can we all stop "the Board have NO money", not one of the board have invested a single penny into the club beyond buying the shares they own. It could also be the case at many other clubs but not as apparent as at Everton. It’s a bit of a moot point, some clubs have seen their owners and boards spend their own hard earned in their clubs but not this one. It wouldn’t be so much of a problem if the on and off field income generation exceeded the outgoings. Everton’s marketing is poor, they failed to appreciate a golden opportunity in the Capital of Culture year and even the obvious merchandising of our European jaunts are better served by traders who recognise profit and serve it up outside the ground.

Where are the long, medium and short term strategies? How can supporters consistently come up with better ideas than the board? If you doubt this then how long did the club take to pick up on a City centre store?
Mike Oates
21   Posted 01/12/2009 at 22:15:26

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Chris - I know putting prices way up would have a knock on effect but I’m really struggling to see how Everton are going to generate the funds neccessary to support our aim.

If you look at what Keith Harris (the financial guy who got Abramovich, got Man City the Thai, got Randy whathisname for Aston Villa, got West Ham the Icelanders) said 12 months ago is that Everton are virtually unsaleable - Liverpool area is poor, its a 2 club city and Liverpool FC will always be more attractive to any investor , Goodison is crap and therefore amjor investment would be required - no investor would get his 5-10% he wants.
We need that billionaire who wants us as his play thing a la Man City and Chelsea.
Chris Butler
22   Posted 01/12/2009 at 22:38:22

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Well it's an idea... but it has huge risks, Mike.
Richard Dodd
23   Posted 02/12/2009 at 08:55:34

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Let’s not be mealey mouthed, the present unrest is purely because of the bad run of results. That’s just something Davey will fix as soon as he gets his troops fit for action.

Without DK becoming reality, there is little prospect of BB finding new investors — whether that be capital infusion or outright sale. I’m more than happy with Bill at the helm although his PR set-up needs a bloody good shake-up I will admit.

Barry Kermode
24   Posted 02/12/2009 at 13:26:51

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Liverppol is poor and we are a 2 town club but anything is for sale at the right price. But BK doesn’t want to sell so it ain’t gonna happen.

Regarding pricing and impact on future generations - put the prices up but not by as much as has been mentioned AND let the kids in for free.
Rob Hollis
25   Posted 03/12/2009 at 00:13:01

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Having voted for Kirby I think I am glad it turned out not happening. Not because of the location but because it would cost.

Would it not be better to invest in the team? If you are selling out every week, have a season ticket waiting list and are maximising your income via CL football and marketing then it just might be easy to borrow the cash to gain a bigger capacity stadium.

If you can’t sell out the one you have got then why spend money on empty seats? Build a trophy winning team and the rest will follow.

By the way Chris, you are so wrong about Bily and Fellaini. Great players who just need to be in a team with the right blend. Now Pienaar is back they will look a lot better and then Arteta it will be excellent. Pienaar is the best player to pull on a blue shirt since Trevor Steven. I am in a strangely positive mood tonight.

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