Arsenal’s second largest shareholder, Alisher Usmanov, says that Arsene Wenger must remain at the club despite discontent with the manager after another Premier League season looks like it’s going to end without the title.
The Uzbeki oligarch has always backed the Frenchman, and says that he has to stay in charge of football matters, and oversee the succession to a new man when that time comes.
Speaking to Rossiya24, he said, “Arsenal’s results are stable. They are always among the leaders of the English Premier League. This is a good and large sports business project, and I am pleased with it.
“The only thing is that today such situation occurred, like in any sport, there are ups and downs. The club must retain its major symbol and main asset – manager Arsene Wenger.
“Failures have been haunting Arsenal for many years now, they cannot become the EPL champions. This has led to some discontent with Wenger’s position as a manager.
“I believe that Arsene Wenger is a great coach, and Arsenal have to give him the opportunity to plan the succession process and leave his legacy when he deems it necessary.
“It is very important for the football club to maintain the principles that were established by those people who created its victories. Arsenal need Arsene Wenger.”
Usmanov owns 30.04% of Arsenal via his Red and White Holdings vehicle, and became the sole owner of those shares after partner Farhad Moshiri sold his stake to purchase an interest in Everton.
Despite the large shareholding, he does not have a place on the board, and remains very much on the outside with Stan Kroenke’s KSE calling all the shots.