Ukrainian says ‘any’ club would love to sign Argentine.
Arsenal shareholder Alisher Usmanov has criticised the club for selling Robin van Persie and confessed that it would be a dream to sign Barcelona’s Lionel Messi.
Usamov currently owns 29.9 per cent of the Premier League outfit, with Stan Kroenke the leading shareholder with 66.7 per cent.
The Urainian businessman again gave his backing to under-pressure boss Arsene Wenger but, in a veiled criticism of the Frenchman, stressed that the club should not have allowed Robin van Persie to join Manchester United in the summer.
“Arsene Wenger is one of the best coaches in the world,” the 59-year-old told CNBC.
“He has overcome many difficulties over the past five years, and not had enough support from the Arsenal board to keep players, and sign new players in the transfer market.
“It was a mistake selling Robin van Persie, but Wenger clearly explained that he wanted to leave in an attempt to win trophies.”
Usmanov was also quizzed hypothetically on what he would do with more boardroom power, and whether or not he would be willing to pay £100bn to bring Messi to England.
“My dream is to have a bigger stake in Arsenal football club. But we will wait, and see,” he continued. “I think any club would pay any money for Lionel Messi. Particularly now, in today’s climate. But, you cannot pay an enormous and unrealistic price.”
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