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Ben Hayes - Charlton Athletic programme

Football Finance

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Ricoh deny 'lock out' claims

Arena Coventry Limited (ACL), the operators of the Ricoh Arena, have denied claims by Coventry City chief executive Tim Fisher that the Sky Blues have been locked out of the stadium.   They insist that the doors remain wide open for the club and argue that, in any case, statements of this kind should be made by the administrator.

Manchester United break more records

Robust growth in the three key sectors of commercial, broadcasting and match day income helped Manchester United to achieve record profits and revenues in the three months to 31st March.

Underlying profits increased 25 per cent to a record £25m. Turnover rose a near 30 per cent to £91.7m. Sponsorship revenues increased 52.2 per cent. Group debt decreased by 15.9 per cent since June 2012 to £436.9m. Some analysts think that it could drop to £100m in a few years if the Glazers do not pay themselves dividends.

The challenge facing Italian football

Whichever one thinks is now the best football league in Europe, it is generally accepted that Serie A lags behind La Liga, the Bundesliga and the Premier League.   In an interview with the Financial Times, Andrea Agnelli, the 37-year old president of Juventus said, 'Italian football, as much as Italy, needs structural reforms.   In football, you need a concerted effort: violence, stadiums, trademark protections.'

Football tops sports rich list

Football accounts for nearly half of the hundred sportsmen listed in the new Sunday Times sports rich list. The number of footballers, managers and past players has gone up from 48 to 49 compared with last year. In the first list, the number was 57, but no other sports come near. Golf and motor sport have eight each.

In the list of 40 sports stars under 30, all but nine are footballers with fortunes of £5m or more. There are 27 foreign-born footballers in the top 100 and the under-30 list out of a total of 71.

Kuwaiti company gears up for European football investment

Former Charlton chief executive Peter Varney has been appointed as chief executive of a Kuwaiti company seeking to make investments in European football. KEH were founded in 2008 and up to now have focused on real estate, tourism and health care.

KEH have extensive property investments interests in Sussex, including a major property development at Newhaven which includes a water park. They also own the Ambassador hotel on the Eastbourne seafront.

Can Wenger spend wisely?

Arsenal have now gone eight years without a trophy. Qualification for the Champions League next season remains in the balance and a failure to do so would cost the club £30m. Even more important, it would be a blow to their morale as being an 'ever present' in the Champions League has been seen as offsetting the failure to win a trophy. But you can't parade your Uefa coefficient round the streets of Islington.

The Crewe model

How do you run a Football League club successfully in a medium-sized town where your average gate is around the 5,000 mark? On Saturday the Crewe Alexandra team which beat Walsall 2-0 to confirm a mid-table finish in League 1 was made up entirely of youth players.

The cruellest drop

The Football Conference may have become a de facto fifth division, but relegation to it is the cruellest drop of all.   Only two teams come back up each year and many of the clubs playing there were at one time in the Football League.   There is even the risk of falling further, as has happened to Stockport County this year.

The riches of the Premiership

Just how many wealthy people are involved in the Barclays Premier League is shown by the list published in The Times today of the richest Premier League owners.   No less than 26 names make the list, more than there are clubs in the top flight.

No pay for Hereford players

Hereford United players were sent a group text yesterday telling them that they will not get their wages for April. The players were already owed money as they were not paid in full in March.