Arsenal awaits a new owner

Indications are that Arsenal may have a new owner. Unlike the other big three, Man Utd, Chelsea, and Liverpool, where the owners were largely unknown before their takeover, this potential takeover by Stan Kroenke, builds on an pre-existing arrangement with Arsenal. He owns Arsenal’s US marketing rights, having agreed to raise Arsenal’s profile in the US. Kroenke just bought out ITV’s 9.9% share in the London club, a £65m commitment.
Kroenke has a soccer lineage, he owns the Colorado Rapids. His company Kroenke Sports Enterprises also owns the NBA’s Denver Nuggets, and NHL’s Colorado Avalanche.
The interesting part is that Arsenal traditionally have been the most cautious club in terms of a foreign takeover. Wenger has always applied the brakes. His system, developing talent on the cheap with the occasional expensive splurge has served the club well. But now that the other three have gone to big money, Arsenal is in danger of being left behind. Their present squad is about 2-3 years from realizing its full potential but some of the front line players might be a bit too old by then. Lehmann, Henry, and Gilberto are showing signs of wear and tear, with Henry having recurring injury problems. In addition, Barca has not given up on him.
Arsenal is courting Samuel Eto’o and Gianluigi Buffon. For just these two, it will need at least £40m. With a Kroenke takeover, Wenger will not cringe at the thought of spending this much money, balancing it out with lower priced talent like Ryan Babel and Samir Nasri.
Arsenal has also relied on relationships with associate clubs like Beveren and Celta Vigo for tapping talent. The Colorado Rapids could become another source of exposure for talented soccer players from the US looking to get some Premiership action and benefiting under Wenger’s tutelage.
E. Stanley Kroenke’s profile >>

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