Billionaire Usmanov made $1.3 bln offer for control of Arsenal

20 May, 2017, 06:34 | Author: Oscar Goodwin

Usmanov already owns a 30% stake in the club, but has written to majority shareholder Kroenke to express his interest in taking over. However, he has since informally indicated he is not interested in selling to Mr Usmanov or anyone else. "Now I am not so sure", a person close to the situation told the Financial Times.

The men have been at odds for a number of years over the direction of the club.

Usmanov's Red and White Holdings has always been shut out of a seat on the Board even though they own 30% of the club, which has long angered the minority owner.

While the pair have been at loggerheads for years, Usmanov is said to be "increasingly concerned" about the lack of investment being made in the club by "Silent Stan" and his board, from which the Uzbekistan steel magnate has been excluded.

Kroenke is yet to respond to the letter, which was sent last month, but is thought to be unwilling to sell.

With one more round of matches to be played this weekend, Arsenal is poised to finish outside the top four sides for the first time in more than 20 years, denying them a place in Europe's elite Champions League next season. Arsenal stands to lose out on about £50 million (€58 million) in revenue if it misses out on the European tournament.

Arsenal fans have been disappointed by the club's performance this season and manager Arsene Wenger said on Friday a decision on his future will be made at a board meeting following the FA Cup final clash against Chelsea this month.

The American increased his shareholding - through his company Kroenke Sports Enterprise - to 67.05 per cent of the club with a purchase of 23 ordinary shares in May 2016.

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

Under Kroenke, Arsenal's Premier League trophy drought has continued.

The Russian will need to acquire Kroenke's shares if he is to have any say in the future of Arsenal football club, something he really aspires on doing.

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