Previous names: Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Wenger and the Board are in denial!

First they tell us that the alliance with Kroenke's football team in the USA earlier in the year is only to exchange players and knowledge through the creation of a football Center of Excellence in the States and that Kroenke will not be buying into Arsenal!

Then they tell us that Kroenke's 1% purchase of shares from Fiszman this month is only an investment and nothing else. And what has actually happened? Kroenke buys 9.99% worth of shares from ITV. We all know that a bid is imminent. We predicted it last month!
A bid for Arsenal is on the cards. Reading between the lines….and we feel anyone with some experience in the financial world would have seen the signs early enough. What we all thought though was that Fiszman would be the one to sell to Kroenke not Dein!And now they tell us that the Board, except Dein, will not sell for a year! This is what club announced today:

"In light of recent speculation with regards to the ownership of the club, the remaining board members, who together own 45.45% of the issued share capital of the company, would like to reassure the supporters, shareholders and employees of Arsenal Football Club that they remain long-term holders of their interests in the club. To this effect, they have entered into an agreement not to dispose of their shares for at least one year and have confirmed that they intend to retain their interests on the expiration of this period."

A year is very very long time in the world of football and of course in business. The question is what will happen, as is now likely, if Kroenke buys Dein's share of 14.6% to add to his 11.6% to make 26.2%? He will have a sizeable part in his hands which he can use as a springboard for persuading the Board to come round to his way of thinking.

Also note that the current Board (excluding Dein of course) are not in control of 54.54% of the club's shares! Kroenke therefore can now start scooping up these shares outside the ownership of the Board putting even more pressure on the Board to sell when the year ends.

As we wrote before we are not necessarily against foreign ownership of Arsenal. Some of the comments on our previous postings by readers have made the point that Man Utd, Liverpool and even Chelsea have not suffered from being sold. Man Utd are on the way to a Premiership title and maybe on to other triumphs as we speak!

In our previous posting on the issue we wrote:

"What will Wenger’s position be?
Does his earlier statement that Kroenke’s is looking at Arsenal as an “investment” mean that he could be hostile to all this? He should not be. It may in fact turn out that more money may now be made available to him than what the existing Board were willing to release. Kroenke has in fact splashed out the money for his other “franchises” and has paid huge sums to buy players (even at the expense of incurring expensive fines) and bring success."

The worrying aspect of course is the uncertainty that is bound to be created during this crucial year. Will there be attempts by Kroenke to get the Board to talk? And will this uncertainty spill over to the coaching staff and the players?

We hope not.


Anonymous said...

I told you it was all a bit fishy. Dein was Arsenal . What will wenger do now?

er said...

Wenger always sees his contracts through to the end and

goner said...

Lets hope thi doesn't jeopardise our challenge for honours next season!

Anonymous said...

Dein and the American are likely to be in this together and Dein could come back if Kronke succeeds

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