Oligarch seeks Arsenal seat

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The Independent Online

Alisher Usmanov, the Russian oligarch who bought a 14.6 per cent stake in Arsenal last week, is seeking a seat on the board of the north London football club. The multi-billionaire has said he wants to increase the stake but insists he has no plans to mount a full takeover bid.

Mr Usmanov, who bought the stake from former Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein for £75m, is seeking a meeting with the club's directors. He has yet to request a boardroom seat but is understood to be planning to do so.

The magnate appointed Mr Dein as chairman of his investment vehicle, which holds the stake. Arsenal directors are unlikely to allow Mr Dein to rejoin the board as Mr Usmanov's representative as he was ousted earlier this year for what the club called "irreconcilable differences".

This week Arsenal will announce that manager Arsène Wenger has finally signed a three-year extension to his contract.