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Russian Bid & Champions League draw 31 August, 2007

Posted by lasagnechef in Arsenal News, Champions League.


Well yesterday Davis Dein sold his 15% percent share in Arsenal to Russian businessman Alisher Usmanov. He’s something like the 150th richest man in the world and has a box at Ashburton Grove. Usmanov has started a name, Red & White under which the shares have been bought and has named Dein as Chairman of it. Farhad Moshiri who is a business associate of Usmanov’s is also part of this Red & White group.

Their intentions are clear, they want to take over Arsenal, and David Dein believes their bid is the way forward for Arsenal. I’m not sure where this puts Stan Kroenke now, maybe he will continue to compete but it is likely that Red & White will make him an offer for his share.

Gilbertosilver and Arseblogger understand these sort of things a lot better than me so if you fancy finding out more and reading their opinions then definitely visit Gunnerblog and Arseblog.

I suppose if I want anyone to take over Arsenal I would want it to be someone with the best interests for Arsenal at heart and it seems (on the surface anyway) that this is the intention of Red & White. Dein has many times told us he’s loved this club since he was six, he’s done a great deal for us and put a lot of money and effort into Arsenal, but recently it seems he’s become a little focused on the takeover of Arsenal. Also, the man with the money, Alisher Usmanov is a keen follower of Arsenal and has a box at the Grove. The reality of life today is that everything is about money; however at least we have people here who might give a toss what happens to the club.

I’ll talk more on this once I properly understand what’s going on but that’s the basics of it, as I understand it.

Yesterday the Champions League group stages were selected. Below is the draw we got:

Group H:
Sevilla/AEK Athens
Steaua Bucharest
Slavia Prague

Seville and AEK play on Monday night but you have to expect the side from Spain to progress. I think it was a pretty good draw for us. Seville are a very good side but you have to think we are capable of finishing in the top two in Group H. Our first match is away at Steaua Bucharest on the 2nd October. You can see the rest of the draw here; Liverpool got Porto, Chelsea have Valencia and Man United go back to Roma where their fans were battered by Italian Police.

Right I’m off. Have a nice weekend everyone.


1. J-Lo - 31 August, 2007

dein has never put any money into the club.

2. Anonymous - 31 August, 2007

J-Lo: He purchased 15% of the club. How many shared do you own?

3. FunGunner - 31 August, 2007

@ Anonymous. Dein purchased 15% of the club from PHW, not the club. The club didn’t see any of the money, it was just a transfer in the ownership. The club only receives money from an ISSUE of shares.

4. J-Lo - 31 August, 2007

Ditto FunGunner.

There seems to be a bit of confusion among some people about this idea of “investment.” Dein paid approx 260,000 for 16% of the club which he sold yesterday for 75 million pounds. He didn’t invest any money into the club (like Abramovich, Jack Walker, Jack Hayward, etc).

That’s all I was saying.

5. Mickey C - 31 August, 2007

If Red and White but up Stan K’s shares then they may be able to vote Dein back into Arsenal as Chairman at the next elections.

6. Howard - 31 August, 2007

When Abramovich purchased the club initially it wasn’t an investment in Chesea, the money went to the pocket of Ken Bates, the owner then, subsequently, he’s invested about 500 million buying players of about 400 million, paying huge wages to club officials and building a new training grounds. In fact, he’s footing the bills for Chelsea’s operational expenses as currently the club is unable to meet its expenses from its income. Chelsea will be in real trouble even paying wages if God forbid Abramovich is no more. That’s not what Arsenal needs. We’re taking care of ourselves already and match day takings exceed takings of any club in the world now. So we don’t need a billionaire let alone a Russian and American ones. This takeover will be resisted and won’t succeed because they’
re all vultures encircling Arsenal to reap what they,ve not sewn with the backing of traitor Dein.

7. Mickey C - 31 August, 2007

Well its past midnight and there have been no announcements that we have signed any new players. I was hopefull that we may bring in someone at the last minute, but it looks like Wenger is pleased with his squad..

8. Mickey C - 31 August, 2007

Scratch that – just been on the Arsenal website and we have signed Lassana Diarra from Chelsea.

9. Majestyk - 31 August, 2007

Diarra is quality and I hope he does well for us but where will he fit in with Cesc, Diaby, Gilberto and Denilson all playing centre mid?

10. Majestyk - 31 August, 2007

I forgot about the Flamster and Alex Song!

11. sanfrangoon - 1 September, 2007

the signing of diarra is good for two reasons:

1) he’s a good player (although now great, perhaps wenger knows how to make him better)

2) but more importantly, it shows that wenger understands that song and flamini ain’t the final answer

12. Mickey C - 1 September, 2007

I disagree sanfrangoon, I think that we are already well enough covered in the centre of midfield and at right back not to spend money on a player who at best will be a squad player.

We already have Flamini who plays in the same positions but has more domestic and eurpoean experiance than Diarra.

I really think that this is a poor investment because if we are competing with Chelsea for the league and he was not good enough to nail a place down there, how is he going to help improve our squad?

If he was sick of not playing at Chelsea he will hate it at Arsenal as the likes of Diaby, Cesc and Denilson will keep him out the team for years to come and if he could not get a regular game at right back there then he has no chance here.

If Wenger thinks that he will provide cover during the African cup of nations then he should have got him to sign a pre-contract agreement and he could have joined in january for free when his current contract expires with Chelsea.

I was hoping that we would be getting rid of Song and Adebayor and bringing in another striker, instead we still have the two donkeys and have brought in a black version of Flamini.

13. Howard - 1 September, 2007

Mickey, you don’t understand. Diarra is one of the best defensive midfielders who can even be better than Gilberto. In fact he has something that both Gilberto and Flamini don’t have, steel and tackling ability. Flamini is a box to box office but his defensive support is poor. Now, Denilson is like Fabregas and don’t provide much for defensive cover, same as Diaby. Diarra is Chelsea’s Makalele they didn’t see. I personally think he’s better than Mikel in that position. He can also cover in both left and right full backs so again, Wenger was looking at solving our defensive problems in bringing in Diarra. The absence of Gilberto recently created a big lack of defensive cover, however hard Flamini worked, we still lacked key cover when playing Manchester City, Fulham and Blackburn. He has steel and will give us a lot of triumphs in our midfield battles with teams like Bolton, Blackburn, Everton and now Newcastle. Arsene wanted to sign him before he moved to Chelsea, so he’s been a long time target of Arsene. With him available, I can see Song moving on and chances of Flamini becoming more limited. Diarra is better than Sidwell too in that position and his wages won’t be much and came cheap at 5 million. Chesea bought him at a higher price and only 22, he’s at his prime.

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15. Mickey C - 1 September, 2007

Howard, you dont understand – How is Diarra “one of the best defensive midfielders” when he cant get a regular starting place? What has he actually acomplished to give you this impresion? To say he can be even better than Gilberto is only saying that he has pottential and we have an entire squad full of that.
I dont understand this “steel” that he is meant to have that Flamini has not – Diarra is 5ft 7in and Flamini is 5ft 10in, both roughly the same build – Flamini regularly flys into hard tackles.
To say that Diarra was Chelsea’s Makalele they didnt see is stupid, am I meant to believe that some of the best coaches, scouts and one of the best managers in the league, watching Diarra day in day out for the last 2 years have failed to spot the raw tallent you have managed to see in a few glimpses of him.
Also I can not agree with the statement that “The absence of Gilberto recently created a big lack of defensive cover, however hard Flamini worked, we still lacked key cover when playing Manchester City, Fulham and Blackburn.” – Firstly Gilberto played against Man City and secondly, we are unbeaten so far this season, only conceding 2 goals both of which were down to goal keeping errors.
You say that “Chesea bought him at a higher price”, Chelsea bought him for £1 million in July 2005 and we have reportedly paid £5 million for him when he would have been on a free in January.
Lastly, when has a player ever been in his prime at 22 years of age? You start you post saying he can be better than Gilberto and end it saying that he is at his prime, which one is it?

16. GreenGunner - 5 September, 2007

I have a feeling Diarra’s signing means Gilberto is off. I don’t think its going to happen during the season, but I’d be surprised if he didn’t leave next summer.

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