Arsenal dismiss takeover claims after reports of Middle East interest

Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke
Stan Kroenke

Arsenal have dismissed the possibility of owner Stan Kroenke selling his majority stake in the Gunners following reports that a Middle East consortium could make a £1.5bn offer for the club.

The Sunday Telegraph has reportedexternal-link that an unnamed group is set to move for the Emirates club.

But Arsenal have denied the claims.

"Mr Kroenke is committed to Arsenal FC for the long term and has no intention of selling," Arsenal communications director Mark Gonnella told BBC Sport.

"There has been no contact from any consortium regarding a takeover."

The reports claim that the potential investors, from Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, have requested a meeting with Kroenke.

The story also says that the group would put up significant funds for new players as well as lowering ticket prices at the Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal have not won a trophy since 2005 and Kroenke has faced criticism from fans following the sales of key players Cesc Fabregas,Samir Nasri and Robin van Persie in recent years.

Manager Arsene Wenger has also faced questions about his future after a disappointing season.

Wenger's team, knocked out of the Capital One Cup and the FA Cup by Bradford and Blackburn respectively, are fifth in the Premier League and look unlikely to progress in the Champions League after losing the first leg of their last-16 tie with Bayern Munich 3-1 at the Emirates.

Kroenke joined the club's board in 2008 and completed his takeover of the Gunners in 2011.

Speaking after his team's 2-1 defeat to Tottenham, Wenger insisted he knew nothing of the reports.

The manager said: "I don't know anything about it, I heard it like you in the newspapers.

"You are only vulnerable if you want to sell and you need money. [However], that doesn't concern me at all, that is down to the owners."

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