Alisher Usmanov, the Uzbek billionaire who owns a minority stake in Arsenal FC, has tonight made a £1bn bid to buy a controlling stake in Arsenal FC.
Alisher Usmanov, a billionaire who made his fortune in metals currently owns a 30 per cent stake in the English Premier League club, and has now set his sights on a controlling stake of a club who he feels needs a direction of change. The offer has been made to Stan Kroenke the current majority stakeholder, who has yet to respond or make any comment.
The bid regnites a bitter feud between Alisher Usmanov and Stan Kroenke over the direction of the club. Usmanov has been a big critic of the way Kroenke has run the club, siting the lack of investment over recent years, failure to challenge for the English Premier League, and seeing a top for finish as acceptable season after season.
Arsenal FC are currently sitting 5th in the English Premier League and face the prospect of failing to qualify for the Uefa Champions League for the first time in almost 20 years. The club stands to lose an estimated £50m in revenue if it was to miss out on Europes elite competition. This will not only impact the club financially, but impact the quality of players they can bring to the club.
This seasons performances on the pitch have been frustrating for the supporters and increased tensions between the fans and Arsene Wenger. Many, unhappy with the clubs form in recent seasons, have accused the board of lacking ambition.
It will now be an interesting summer at Arsenal FC, as fans will now be hoping for either a change of management in the football team, or a change in ownership and management to take the club into a new era and direction they have been craving for a few years now.