“The significant increase in revenue, together with prudent financial management, resulted in the club showing a profit and that is reassuring, given the substantial loss in the previous year. There is much more work to be done but these positive financial results give the club a strong platform on which to build. We all want to see the club improve and be competitive at every level, and in every competition. We are convinced that the best route to achieving this is to do so sustainably, spending on young development players and adding high quality to the first team squad each season – players that can really make a difference and improve the team - without risking the financial health and stability of the club. We strongly believe that consistently doing the above, and robustly following this policy, will give us the best possible chance of achieving our shared ambitions.
“Clearing our short-term debt – some of which was meant to have been repaid much earlier – is an important responsibility and is a key part of living within our means. As a result of the repayment, the amount due to the owner now stands at £111m, all of which is considered, by the owner, to be long term in nature having been in place for over a decade, and repayable only in the event of the sale of the club. Mike has only ever been repaid the money he put into the club in the form of short term borrowing. Effectively he is now back to the position where he was when he bought the club.
“Our budget to strengthen the team and establish our place back in the Premier League has been circa £122 million over the last two seasons, which was an initial agreed budget of £70 million plus an additional £52 million generated as a result of sales and outgoing loans. We have spent just over 90% of that - £111 million – and the balance of £11 million will be carried forward to supplement what we have for forthcoming transfer windows as we look to strengthen again. In terms of how we spend our money moving forward we would envisage spending it on quality rather than quantity – players that can really make the difference and improve the team. We’d then look to supplement this with loans etc. Spreading the budget over a larger number of permanent signings will undoubtedly impact on the quality of player we are able to bring in. We will also look to ring-fence a specific additional budget to spend on young development players that have the potential to be part of the first team in the future.
"We don't want to comment on speculation about the manager's future. We would prefer for conversations between Rafa and the club to remain between us. We will communicate with supporters as soon as there is a formal update. As we sit here today Mike is still the owner of the club and as such we have to continue to operate business as usual and that of course includes planning for next season."