UEFA president Aleksandar Ceferin has criticised the increases in wage growth across Europe’s elite football clubs.
Arsenal have the fourth highest wage bill in the Premier League with an annual bill of £192 million, according to the latest figures by Deloitte.
In the UEFA annual ‘benchmarking report” which is due to be published on Monday, but leaked to the Daily Mail, Ceferin highlights nine super clubs, including Arsenal, that are so rich no other clubs have a chance of catching up with them. Four other Premier League clubs including Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool are also named among the nine. Ceferin is quoted by the Daily Mail in the report as saying:
‘As the guardian of the game in Europe, UEFA must remain vigilant and take note of the less positive trends highlighted in the report, such as a return to high wage growth and the increasing concentration of sponsorship and commercial revenue among a handful of clubs.’
The wage bill looks set to increase even further still if both Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez agree new deals to stay at the Emirates beyond the 18 months left on their respective contracts.
It has been reported that Chinese Super League club Hebei China Fortune have offered Sanchez in excess of £400,000 a week to move to the Far East. The Gunners are reportedly prepared to pay only half that but it would still be a marked increase on the £130,000 a week the Chilean is currently being paid.