According to reports, Arsenal are edging closer to securing a pre-season tour of Nigeria in an attempt to gain more supporters and expand their brand globally after much success from last years east Asia trip.
The Gunners are a popular side within the African country, especially after Nwankwo Kanu’s five year tenure with the North London outfit. Arsenal’s board of directors are believed to be undergoing discussions for the tour that would take place in July, and is rumoured to follow the same length and intensity of matches and press outings as their previous excursion across the globe.
Arsène Wenger was not overly thrilled with the trip to Malaysia and China mainly due to the exposure his young side got whilst trialing different players and the fatigue the rigorous trip brought with it. The Frenchman’s preferred method of preseason training is a close to home Alpine retreat that is private and less demanding. Wenger did manage to barter the length of east Asia tour, with it kept as short as possible, consequently the players spent exactly eight days (including travel) away from London.
Wenger naturally wants to compete against the top Nigerian teams, and also the quality of facilities will be a key factor for whether the tour gets the ‘go ahead’ or not, however the tour will most likely get the nod purely because the business end will capitalize upon many financial benefits from a visit to West Africa.
The success of their past preseason excursion definitely over weighed Wenger’s negatives for Arsenal’s board, especially for ‘Silent Stan’ Kroenke who has made the development of commercial revenue his number one priority under the Gunner’s business strategy, and there is nothing more exciting for football fans to meet and see their favourite players in the flesh.
Arsenal are expected to produce strong financial results before the end of February, and are keen to continue their self-sustaining business model and improve with fresh ideas to elevate the club to new levels as the Club does not have a billionaire that splashes cash left, right and centre.
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In principal the idea of a self-sustaining model is a fantastic idea, and it is something that many top teams are now turning too such as Manchester City who are looking at upgrading youth facilities to rival the Catalan giants Barcelona’s academy, however these clubs still SPEND when required to reinforce their side. Look at Barcelona, they already had an amazing side before last summer, yet they splashed decent hard cash on Fabregas and Sanchez who have taken them up another level because it was required.
Arsenal (not just Wenger, the board needs to sanction it) NEED to use this money they are receiving from transfers and overseas trips at the very least to inject into the first team and make us title challengers again. Sorry for the rant… but on a more pleasing note our Nigerian readers will be extremely happy to hear that the Gunners are highly likely to head over to their homeland this July, hopefully next summer will be more exciting and not one plagued by a mass exodus of players.