Arsene Wenger claimed that any would-be club owner hoping to fund an English top-flight outfit will face more than an uphill battle trying to catch up with the likes of Liverpool and Co. in the league.
The Merseysiders and Manchester City have, for the most part, been playing on another plane separate to the rest.
“I would say he [Abramovich] was the first big investor [before] the Glazers to come in, at a golden period for a guy that was a billionaire,” the Frenchman told beINSports (via TEAMtalk).
“There was no Financial Fair Play, you could put as much money in as you wanted.
“Today, with the FFP, I would not necessarily advise somebody to come in to fight against Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool, who are lightyears ahead of them, to build a good team – because you cannot invest the money you want to invest.”
Indeed, the Reds have been the only outfit to snatch the title from the Cityzens across the last four campaigns, with the former proving to be such a nuisance to the league leaders it prompted Pep Guardiola to describe his rivals as a ‘pain in the ass’.
It seems a pointed message to Newcastle, as well as Roman Abramovich’s potential replacement, following the Magpies’ successful takeover by the Saudi-backed Public Investment Fund.
That being said, given that FFP has been far from the kind of rigorous barrier many had hoped it would be, it’s a matter of debate as to how far such measures will prevent another side following in City’s footsteps.
As such, it will be interesting to observe the extent to which Newcastle’s progress up the ladder is obstructed.