Oct
08
2007
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The London’s Arsenal wary of Russian money

Mr Hill-Wood – the chairman of London’s Arsenal has spoken out against Russian millionaire Alisher Usmanov becoming the owner of the football club.
Usmanov currently has recently upped his stake in the club to 21 per cent stake and has spoken of his plans to increase that to over 25 per cent.
On Monday The Gunners announced their huge increases in turnover and profit in their annual financial results and Hill-Wood reiterated the club’s stance on not needing foreign investment.
US investor Stan Kroenke owns 12.2 per cent of the club’s shares and has met with the board in order to establish a working relationship.
However, Usmanov has yet to meet with Arsenal officials and Hill-Wood remains wary of the Russian and in particular the source of his wealth.
He’s certainly not an open book, Hill-Wood told The Guardian.
Business is murky in Uzbekistan, and that in itself is an argument against him being involved in Arsenal. I wouldn’t want him to be the owner of the club.
Stan Kroenke is involved in sport and we have had constructive meetings with him.
We have never been in better shape financially and do not want anybody to buy the club, but if Kroenke wanted to buy it he would understand it and how to maintain the standards.
We have not met Usmanov, so I may be speaking prematurely, but he seems a different kettle of fish.