Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov, who is the second-biggest shareholder at Arsenal, says that the club are set for a trophy laden decade after finally ending the trophy drought by winning the FA Cup last season. Arsenal went without a trophy for a period of nine years from 2005 to 2014. The drought that started with the FA Cup was eventually brought to an end by the same trophy. Usmanov has been trying to gain control of Arsenal for the last few years. American billionaire Stan Kroenke owns the biggest portion and as a result directly controls the club.
Kroenke and Usmanov have not spoken to each other until now despite being the two biggest shareholders at the club. The cold war between the duo, though, has not prevented Arsenal from finally lifting a major title. Arsene Wenger was extremely prudent during the last 10 years, as he attempted to establish the club financially following their move to the Emirates stadium. Even though main sponsor Emirates paid £ 150 million to the construction of the stadium, it put Arsenal under a lot of pressure. After having finally secured self-sufficiency, Arsenal have been spending big money in the last few years.
This has ultimately led them to a title and Usmanov believes that could be more in the future.
“I think we begin a new era for Arsenal where we win trophies. That is most important for football. The club is very well placed to succeed. The board and main shareholders chose the debt option at the time, which led to Arsenal going almost 10 years without winning a domestic title or the Champions League. The acquisition was financed with debt, which would be repaid through match-day revenues among other sources. I have not had any contact with Mr Kroenke,” said the Russian billionaire.