Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov makes bid to buy Arsenal

Geronimo Vena
Mag 20, 2017

The Uzbek-born Russian is of the view that the owner isn't investing enough in the squad, and recently blamed Kroenke, along with the Arsenal board, for the club's recent failures.

The Russian billionaire, who holds a 30% stake in the club, indicated to Stan Kroenke, the majority shareholder, that he was willing to pay the sum to buy him out. In an interview with Bloomberg last month, Usmanov said the blame for the club's performance should not rest exclusively with Wenger, but also with Kroenke and the board, from which Mr Usmanov is excluded.

The Sun have contacted Arsenal for comment and are waiting for a response.

This is not the first such buyout attempt made by Usmanov, and there were rumblings that after this disappointing season when Arsenal look likely to miss out on a Champions League spot for the first time in 20 years, Kroenke would want to sell out.

Usmanov, whose investment in Arsenal is through Red & White Holdings, has been denied a place on the board of directors by Kroenke and he has publicly questioned the lack of investment in the squad.

Embattled coach Arsene Wenger, whose future is under scrutiny after the team's indifferent form, should have a say in picking his own successor, Usmanov said. The American is notorious for being more interested in the financial gain of owning a sports club than for the success it can bring in from achieving major honours.

Two people following the process closely said that other bidders were circling.

He first acquired shares in Arsenal in 2007, when he teamed up with Farhad Moshiri to purchase a 14.6 per cent stake for £75m.

The Financial Times report that the metals magnate made a bid worth £1bn for Kroenke's stake in the club, with the Telegraph's Jeremy Wilson later confirming that the offer was rejected, but remains on the table.

Arsenal have to beat Everton in their final League game on Sunday and hope either Liverpool draw with Middlesbrough or Watford beat Manchester City with a five-goal swing.

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