West Ham United co-owner David Sullivan has committed to investing more on new players in the transfer market after admitting the club have underspent in recent windows.
The claim comes following the release of the Hammers' financial results for the 2016-17 season which shows a record turnover of £183.3m, centrally due to an increase in the Premier League television deal.
Yet despite broadcast income increasing to £119.3m, ticket sales revenue swelling to £28.4m and the new deal with Betway enhancing their sponsorship income to £25.8m, West Ham invested a paltry amount in their playing squad.
Net cash investment in players totaled £33.6m, up from the £32.4m they had outlaid the previous campaign. However, given that clubs benefited from the record £5.1bn television deal for the first time last term, the 3.7% increase represents a poor return.
Andre Ayew, Robert Snodgrass, Manuel Lanzini, Jose Fonte, Arthur Masuaku, Edimilson Fernandes and loan players Simone Zaza, Jonathan Calleri and Gokhan Tore all arrived across the summer and January windows to help the club finish 11th in the Premier League under then coach Slaven Bilic.
But with West Ham debt free and having invested heavily in infrastructure – a £3.5m overhaul of their academy is also planned – Sulllivan insists the club are in a strong financial position and can look to spend freely in the coming years.
"The club is in the healthiest financial position it has been in for years," said 69-year-old Sullivan, who has a 51.1% controlling stake in West Ham, in a review of the season.
"In each of the last two seasons we have broken our transfer record and improvements in our overall financial position will help us to increase investment again this summer.
"I know some of our supporters will argue we have not spent enough in the transfer windows and signed the right targets - I accept that.
"I have explained in recent weeks we are changing the structure of our scouting and recruitment setup and will make every effort to improve our performance in those areas in the future."
Now in their second season at the much-derided London Stadium, West Ham have revealed the full cost of the move from Upton Park.
The east Londoners made an £8.7m profit on the sale of the ground and other stadium assets to Barratt Homes. They will pay a one-off pre-agreed £15m fee for access to the stadium – though that will be spread over the term of the lease - and used two £5m deposits to help pay off legacy bank loans amounting to £14.7m.