Arsenal Fc 1

Stan Kroenke, the majority shareholder of Arsenal football club, has affirmed his commitment to the club and said his shares are not for sale after minority shareholder Alisher Usmanov made a $1.3bn bid to buy out the American tycoon.

In a statement, KSE UK, the holding company for Mr Kroenke's shares in Arsenal, said:

"KSE UK notes the recent media speculation concerning its shareholding in Arsenal Holdings PLC and confirms that its shares are not, and never have been, for sale. KSE is a committed, long term investor in Arsenal and will remain so."

Uzbek-Russian metals magnate, Mr Usmanov - who currently owns 30 per cent of Arsenal - has been engaged in a long-running feud with Mr Kroenke, criticising his lack of investment in the club.

This weekend, Arsenal missed out on qualifying the Champions league for the first time in 20 years, a failure that is likely to cost it about £50m in lost revenues.

The club's disappointing performance has led to accusations from some quarters that Mr Kroenke has been an absentee owner.

-Financial Times

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