So Newcastle have released their latest accounts and to be fair they don’t make for bad reading if you’re interested in that kind of thing.
The headline figures are that turnover is up, wages are down, commercial income is up and the bottom line profit is just shy of £10 million which isn’t bad at all.
These figures are from last season where we finished 16th in the league and had the Europa League to contend with. In actual fact the figures did show that participation in Europe really wasn’t worth it in terms of finance as the dip in our league form and league position (assuming the Europa League was at least partly to blame for it) failed to be offset by the cash brought in by being in the ugly sister of European competition.
As has been said before, balance sheets can’t be celebrated by football fans so where does this leave us? A lack of incoming transfer activity this season with only two loan deals and the acquisition of a player for the future has been painted by fans as a lack of ambition from the club which is hard to argue with when combined with some baffling statements (cups not important/finish 10th minimum) coming from the club itself. Then you have the cash from the sale of Yohan Cabaye to consider.
The figures for this season (to be released this time next year) should make for interesting reading. If you use our latest accounts as a guide then add on an increase in TV revenue, a likely increase in Premier League prize money, a further increase in commercial revenue and no significant outlay on platers (compared to last season where we signed six players on permanent deals) you can see which way profit is heading. It doesn’t take an accountant to work out it should go up.
But it is what is done with that profit that interests us more than anything. It needs reinvesting in the team. From players to coaches, everything needs improving. If the club do that and show that they are trying they might find that more fans get off their back.
This is where there needs to be a balance between profit and ambition – or investment – but at the moment it’s not clear where the dividing line is. My own opinion is that if there are no shareholders to keep happy with a dividend, and Ashley’s camp is quick to point out he takes no money from the club directly, then what is the point in profit when we still have building to do?
It’s boring for some but please feel free to add your comments below.