Thursday, 19 March 2020

AFCB make loss of £32.4m in annual accounts ending 30 June 2019

The accounts for AFCB make poor reading with a financial loss of £32.4m n the accounting period ending 30 June 2019. This is on top of a loss of £10.9m in the previous financial year. While much of the investment has been spent on player signings, which rose to £94.2m last year compared to £55.8m the year before, it does indicate that the Cherries have spent more than they perhaps should have to be competitive in the Premier League. This kind of spending is unsustainable in the long-term and AFCB are again playing the roulette wheel in my opinion. 
AFCB need to get their finances in order.
The player and staff wages have risen significantly at £110.9 compared to £101.9m in FY18. The club did not disclose how much money was paid to agents during the period. The income of the club was largely dependent on their league position finish which was  14th and landed the club with £131.1m in FY19 down from £134.9m on FY18. But non-Premier League revenue was virtually stable at £15.5m.

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The club's Chief executive Neil Blake stressed that £22.6m profit did come into the club shortly after the accounting period closed on player sales, but even that would still show AFCB has been prepared to take a loss of over £10m for the past two seasons to keep its Premier League status. 
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What happens if the club goes down to the Championship with a parachute payment and a need to recoup funds with player sales? The club did not reveal whether it is in debt and if so by how much, but most of its assets are on the playing field and we could see many players need to leave if the club is relegated. The only problem is that those market values won't be as high as if the club remains in the top flight.

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Spending big might have kept the club growing, but this season it hasn't resulted in better results. The signing of Dominic Solanke, Philip Billing and Lloyd Kelly in the last 12-18 months and the sale of Lys Mousset doesn't bode me with great confidence about recruitment and player sales, even if the purchase of Jack Stacey and the sale of Tyrone Mings can be considered better decisions. The direction of player spending perhaps needs to change very quickly. That is why the new training complex is vital to bring players through and to reduce the player transfer fees. The model AFCB has works okay when the big money continues to come in, but it could leave the club having to face the music next season if things don't go according to plan on the pitch. The new stadium idea certainly looks a distant pipe dream with these kind of financial results.

NB. I am self-isolating at the moment having picked up a chest infection and high-temperature. I'm over the worst but I advise others to self-isolate if they feel any flu-like symptoms as soon as they can for the sake of the elderly and those with underlying conditions. We'll beat this. UTCIAD!

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