Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote says he is plotting a bid to take over Arsenal once the construction of a new oil refinery in Lagos is completed.
The Nigerian billionaire who has a net worth of nearly $13 billion according to Forbes told Bloomberg in an interview that he is planning to make an offer to majority owner Stan Kroenke and his first move as the owner would be to fire Arsene Wenger.
“The first thing I would change is the coach. He has done a good job, but someone else should also try his luck.” Dangote was quoted as saying.
While a growing number of fans turned against Wenger at the end of last season following a less impressive campaign which saw Arsenal miss out on UEFA Champions League qualification, Kroenke remained steadfast in his backing and extended Wenger’s 21-year reign after the club won the FA Cup in May.
Kroenke also rejected a takeover bid from minority shareholder Alisher Usmanov in May and has said the club is not for sale, though that has not deterred Dangote, who has spoken of wanting to purchase Arsenal in the past.
“If they get the right offer, I’m sure they would walk away,” he said. “Someone will give them an offer that will make them seriously consider walking away. And when we finish the refinery, I think we will be in a position to do that.”