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Wenger calm over Kroenke investment
Published : 04 Nov 2009 16:14:00
Arsene Wenger has no problem with Stan Kroenke's continued investment in Arsenal - so long as it never impacts on the way he runs the team. The American tycoon has edged closer towards the takeover threshold following the announcement of the purchase of another 427 shares in Arsenal's parent holding company, at a cost of some £3.6million. "Inside the club, on a daily basis, it does not change anything," the Arsenal boss said. "As long as I am not told I have to change the way I see the vision for the club on the technical side, as long as nobody interferes with that, then I do not see what kind of impact it could have on me." The Denver-based sports magnate is now the largest individual shareholder in the Gunners, with a stake of some 29.6% after acquiring more stock from the estate of the late British industrialist Ernest Harrison. Should Kroenke, or indeed anyone else such as second-largest shareholder Alisher Usmanov, reach a figure of 29.9%, they would, under the City's financial regulations, be obliged to launch a formal takeover bid. Wenger, though, insists it remains very much business as usual at London Colney. He added: "I believe I have shown I can manage a club on the technical side - and I have that guarantee at the club, no matter who the owner will be." As yet, Kroenke - nicknamed 'Silent Stan' for his choice to keep away from the media spotlight - has made no public statement on his long-term intentions for the Barclays Premier League club. Indeed, when Kroenke, now on the Arsenal board, was directly questioned during the recent Annual General Meeting, the American chose not to take the opportunity to address the gathered shareholders, with chairman Peter Hill-Wood intervening. While Hill-Wood insisted major changes behind the scenes were not on the agenda, the Arsenal chairman has also suggested he was "very relaxed" about a proposed takeover by the American.