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'An incredibly sad day', 'dreadful' - Arsenal legend and supporters' trust lament Kroenke takeover

The US businessman has launched a £1.8 billion bid for the North London club.

Gunners fans with anti-Kroenke banners in 2016.
Gunners fans with anti-Kroenke banners in 2016.
Image: John Walton/PA Archive/PA Images

STAN KROENKE’S MOVE to take complete control of Arsenal “marks a dreadful day” for the Gunners, according to the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust (AST).

Kroenke Sports and Entertainment (KSE) informed the London Stock Exchange on Tuesday that it has moved forward with plans to buy Alisher Usmanov’s 30% stake in Arsenal, a deal that values the club at £1.8billion.

KSE already owned 67% of Arsenal and now stand to be in complete control, with Kroenke of the belief that taking the club private will help them strategically in the long run.

But club legend Ian Wright has branded it an “incredibly sad day”, tweeting:

The AST is also unconvinced and said in a statement: “This news marks a dreadful day for Arsenal Football Club.

“Stan Kroenke taking the club private will see the end of supporters owning shares in Arsenal and their role upholding custodianship values.

“By taking the club private, Stan Kroenke will be able to implement the following detrimental actions: pay management fees and dividends without any check or balance, no Annual General Meeting (AGM) to hold the board to account, remove the independent directors, place debt onto Arsenal to support his other business interests.

“The AST is also extremely concerned to note that this purchase is being funded by a loan.

The most dreadful part of this announcement is the news that Kroenke plans to forcibly purchase the shares held by Arsenal fans.

“Many of these fans are AST members and hold their shares not for value but as custodians who care for the future of the club.

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“The AST is wholly against this takeover. Arsenal remains too important to be owned by any one person.”

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