Arsenal owner Kroenke issues formal rejection of Usmanov bid

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The Russian oligarch, who was rebuffed in his advances to become the club's majority shareholder on Friday after he saw a £1bn bid rejected by current owner Stan Kroenke, is not ready to give up on his attempts to usher in a new dawn in north London. Usmanov - the United States sports mogul, who controls a 67 per cent stake - is striking at Kroenke at the point of greatest weakness.

Kroenke has gotten away scott-free for much of the protest, but with Alisher Usmanov finally making an offer to take over the club, you can expect the direction of those protests to take a huge turn.

Usmanov last month said that Kroenke bears responsibility for the team's performance in the English Premier League.

American business entrepreneur Kroenke has been involved with Arsenal for the past decade, with the 69-year-old taking his stake in the club from 12% to 67% during that time.

During Sunday's victory over Everton, which Arsenal won but saw results elsewhere mean the club failed to qualify for the Champions League for the first time in 20 years, large numbers of Gunners fans sang "Stan Kroenke, get out of our club" several times.

Arsenal, who will bid to win the FA Cup for the 13th time against Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on Saturday (27 May), eventually placed fifth - their lowest top-flight finish since 1996.

"Stan Kroenke sees it as another asset".

"Overall I believe that we played since January in a very hard environment for different reasons", Wenger said.

Usmanov, whose investment in Arsenal is through Red & White Holdings, has been denied a place on the board of directors by Kroenke and he has publicly questioned the lack of investment in the squad. He said: "Something has to change, whether it is the manager Arsene Wenger or whether it is the board upstairs".

"We are already missing out on the managers we are supposedly interested in and we are going to start missing out on the kind of players that are going to be available and want to play in the Premier League".