American billionaire Stan Kroenke is close to taking over Arsenal after increasing his shareholding to 62.89%.
Kroenke doubled his shareholding when he acquired the shares of Danny Fiszman and Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith. Kroenke Sports Enterprises has now agreed to make an offer to take over the club which is valued at £731m.
The US Businessman said: “We are excited about the opportunity to increase our involvement with and commitment to Arsenal. Arsenal are a fantastic club with a special history and tradition and a wonderful manager in Arsene Wenger.
“We intend to build on this rich heritage and take the club to new success. I am delighted that Peter Hill-Wood has agreed to support us by continuing as chairman.
“We especially wish to acknowledge and thank the board, Danny Fiszman and the Fiszman family as well as Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith and her family for the confidence they have had in me over the past years and in allowing us to move forward in this more prominent role.”
City plan Wilshere raid.
Manchester City are preparing a £40million bid for Arsenal starlet Jack Wilshere, according to The News of the World.
The 19-year-old has been a key player for the Gunners throughout what has been a magnificent season for him. Wilshere was praised for his performances against Barcelona in the Champions League, he made his full international debut earlier in the season and has been nominated for the Young Player of the Year award.
The Citizens are reportedly hoping to pry the youngster away from the Emirates this summer with a £40million move and it is understood that the club would be willing to double his wages in order to persuade him to move to the City of Manchester Stadium.
Wenger praises Lehmann.
Arsene Wenger has praised Jens Lehmann for his performance against Blackpool on Sunday.
The former German international, who was an emergency signing for the Gunners, was handed a shock start when Manuel Almunia picked up an injury before the game and had to be withdrawn.
Lehmann was kept busy by the Tangerines throughout the second-half until Robin van Persie killed the game off with 15 minutes remaining and secured the 3-1 victory for the Gunners.
Wenger, talking to Sky Sports, praised the former Stuttgart stopper’s determination after the game: “Jens is a competitor. He brings determination, which you need in the final sprint.”
The shotstopper revealed that even he was surprised to make an appearance for the title challengers: “I couldn’t really think about it, I couldn’t afford to be nervous. I loved playing football and when you finish it’s a little bit boring because you don’t have this adrenaline any more but that’s what came back to me. I’m quite happy about it.
“Sometimes life is about surprises. I don’t know [what happens next]. If that’s my last game ever, I’m happy because we won.”