Ivan Gazidis tells Arsenal fans: 'Arsene Wenger is not scared to spend money'

Despite having money at his disposal, there is no guarantee the Arsenal manager will use it

Simon Rice
Tuesday 11 June 2013 14:42 BST
Arsene Wenger
Arsene Wenger (GETTY IMAGES)

Arsene Wenger is not scared to spend money on players, however he will not fritter Arsenal's transfer budget away just for the sake of it says Ivan Gazidis.

The club's chief executive was addressing fans at a question and answer session at the Emirates during which he reiterated there are funds available in what he predicts will be a "big summer" for the Gunners.

The current close season is the first in years that the Gunners are not expected to lose one of their best players, with the arrival of top class talent expected. Among those linked with moves to the Emirates have been Wayne Rooney and Gonzalo Higuain.

However, big-name players have been linked with the club before and yet have failed to materialise. At times Wenger has been accused of being too frugal and overly concerned with balancing the books. Yet Gazidis insists Wenger is ready to spend money, at least on the right players.

"It is no secret that we think he (Wenger) has done a fantastic job and we think we can give him the tools he needs," said Gazidis.

"When we are thinking about trusting someone with the type of money we will have, we can think of nobody better than Arsene.

"He is not scared to spend money, but he has to believe he is getting a top-class player.

"The parameters in which he has to operate is to spend what the club can afford and my job is to make that as big as possible and Arsene's job is to think about which talent he wants to spend that on in the best way possible.

"If we only find one player that we like, we won't spend twice as much on him just so we can say we spent all of the money. That doesn't make any sense to me - the key will be to buy the players Arsene Wenger believes in."

After clinching Champions League football on the last day of the season, Arsenal are determined to improve the strength of the squad so that a sustained challenge for the Premier League title can be made.

Last week Gazidis maintained improved commercial deals would see an "escalation in our financial firepower", with an additional £70m understood to have been set aside should Wenger wish to land a marquee signing. Gazidis today stressed that everything is being done behind the scenes to secure whatever additional talent Wenger requires.

"It is a big summer. We have been working very, very hard to gain the kind of financial capability we need as a football club to be at the very top end of the game," he said.

"The ambition that (majority shareholder) Stan Kroenke, Arsene Wenger, the players, our staff and I know all of the fans have is to be competing to win the Premier League and Champions League. If we are at that level, the trophies will come.

"Those long term commercial deals have come up for renewal. You know about the Emirates (stadium and sponsorship) deal, I can't talk about the (new) kit deal yet, but we're confident of a good result there too.

"It is all about giving us the capability to go to the manager and to say 'here is the money for you to compete'. That is why we are in this stadium and that is what we want to do."

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