Gazidis 'not happy' with Arsenal season

After their worst ever start to a Premier League season and another early elimination from the Champions League, the 50-year-old expecting things to get better


Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis says he is “not happy” with the team’s achievements this season.

After ending a nine-year wait for silverware last season with the FA Cup, a trophy they can retain this term, the Gunners again failed in the Champions League and, although they are currently in fine form, a realistic title charge never materalised early enough.

Arsene Wenger oversaw the club’s worst start to a campaign for 32 years but much-improved form in 2015 has seen them rise to second place. Gazidis, though, has set his sights higher and is looking for improvement heading into next season.

“We are not happy but we are going to keep pushing to the end and see how far we can go,” Gazidis told reporters.

He added: “We are happy with the way the squad has developed and we are very focused how we can make a positive end to the season. After that it will be a question of how can we progress the team further so that we can have an even better season next year.

“We have a squad that’s clearly coming together. It’s a relatively young squad so it will continue to improve. We had a lot of new players this year who are beginning to gel together. We had a lot of injuries at the beginning of the season as well.

“Also coming off a World Cup year there are a lot of complex issues. We were trying to put the jigsaws into the right places at the beginning of the season. I think everyone can see those pieces are now beginning to fit. It gives us great optimism for the future.”

The Premier League recently sealed a 70 per cent rise in domestic TV revenue starting from 2016-17, prompting a dramatic rise in prize money, and Gazidis believes the English top-flight will be more closely contested than ever as a result.

“I think the league is going to get more and more competitive,” Gazidis said. “I do think that is a long-term trend. People talk about Financial Fair Play inhibiting competition.

“I think it’s completely the opposite because what it means is, you are going to see more Southamptons, more challenger teams coming in because revenue has gone up.

“Most of this new revenue is shared very, very equally around the league. We are going to have teams who will to be able to sign top class players. There will be teams that do it very, very well and they are going to be challenging for those top-four places.

“So I think it’s going to become more competitive which is going to be more challenging for clubs like us but I think it’s going to be great news for broadcasters.”

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