Arsenal board slammed by Russian shareholder

Robin van Persie will leave Arsenal FC after confirming that he won’t be signing a new contract at the Emirates Stadium, with the Dutchman citing the club’s lack of ambition as a reason why he will be jumping ship.

Arsenal board slammed by Russian shareholder

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July 5th, 2012

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He’s not the only one to disagree with the direction in which the north London club are heading, with the club’s second-largest shareholders writing an open letter to the board in which they express “deep reservations”.

Red & White Securities Limited, fronted by Alisher Usmanov and Farhad Moshiri, hold around 30% of shares in the Gunners’ parent company.

On the subject of Robin van Persie’s decision not to sign a new contract, they write: “Where are the safeguards to ensure that this doesn’t happen again and again?

“In our view it is clear you are trying to distract attention from the more fundamental issues facing the club.

“These are the financial model, the lack of investment and club’s future strategic direction.

“At the heart of this is the policy of so-called self-financing. The previous decision by the board to fund the building of the Emirates Stadium with long-term debt was, we believe, certainly not about self-financing.”

Red & White clearly want the club to be debt-free but also challenging for silverware, despite some arguing that this isn’t possible unless massive investment comes to the fore.

The letter added: “It is simple. A debt free club, with a big enough war chest to buy top talent players who can hit the ground running and who can complement the club’s long tradition of developing young players and homegrown talent.

“Together they can help the club win the most prestigious trophies – because it is the trophies which are the crowning achievement for everybody at the club.”

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