It emerged on Tuesday that Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke was responsible for buying 22 more shares in the club despite already owning a controlling stake.
Kroenke was prepared to pay £28,000 each for the shares, a record-equalling price despite the purchase having no effect on his ownership.
But what it does is show the only other major shareholder, Alisher Usmanov, who has been consistently refused a seat on the board, that Kroenke remains keen on buying him out and would pay the premium £28,000 per share to do so.
Stan Kroenke bought 22 more shares in Arsenal and continues to strengthen his position
It was reported that Kroenke tried to buy Usmanov’s 30.4 per cent holding last October for almost £525million but was rebuffed.
Kroenke would love to take Arsenal fully private and forgo the annual embarrassment of being harangued by shareholders at the AGM or have to publish accounts. And he could act as absentee owner Silent Stan, with nobody able to complain if Arsenal were registered in Delaware along with Kroenke’s other sporting interests.
An Arsenal statement confirmed Kroenke’s shareholding is now 67.09 per cent.
Major League Baseball are serious enough in following American football and basketball’s NBA in staging league matches in London to set up an office here and hire a PR agency.
The London Stadium will be the baseball venue for two mooted MLB fixtures in 2019, after the football season but before the cricket World Cup, although transforming the ground for a baseball diamond will add more cost to the stadium’s troubled finances.
The USA, Canada and Mexico kicked off their campaign to host the 2026 World Cup by promising a bid that would be above board in every way ahead of the FIFA Congress vote in June.
They also said toxic comments by President Trump about ‘s***hole countries’ create no more of a problem than the politics of any period, with which a bid team have to contend.
Sunil Gulati (centre) is joined by Canadian CONCACAF president Victor Montagliani (left) and Mexican football president Decio De Maria (right) at the 2026 bid launch
Despite having an unblemished record himself, 2026 bid chairman Sunil Gulati did work on CONCACAF business with two of FIFA’s biggest crooks, Jack Warner and the late Chuck Blazer.
But as for £16,000 Parmigiani watches or other famous FIFA-related gifts, the North American bid leaders didn’t even lay on biscuits with the coffee at their London press briefing en route to Lausanne to start lobbying at the UEFA Nations League draw on Wednesday.
The perils of social media saw Arsenal upload a video on Tuesday on their website of new signing Henrikh Mkhitaryan welcoming their target Pierre Aubameyang, who has yet to leave Borussia Dortmund.
Then the club’s official Twitter account used the obscene ‘FFS’ abbreviation to comment on the blunder.
Both postings were later deleted and an Arsenal spokesman said: ‘The mistakes were quickly rectified.’
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang remains a Borussia Dortmund player as it stands
GB’s wintry band of 400
Such is the love for watching sport in this country that the legions who travel abroad to cheer on England at the football World Cup, follow rugby’s British and Irish Lions or join cricket’s Barmy Army number in the thousands.
However, for the niche-interest Winter Games in PyeongChang, the British Olympic Association have done well to muster around 400 fans, including athletes’ friends and family.
Britain’s Australian Open semi-finalist Kyle Edmund, after his victory over Grigor Dimitrov, joined the growing band of players calling the Aussie Grand Slam the best in tennis.
The Melbourne event attracts far more spectators than Wimbledon and has three courts with roofs compared to two at SW19 (by 2019).
A Wimbledon spokeswoman said: ‘Every player is entitled to their opinion, but one of the strengths of the four Grand Slams is that they are all so different.’
Kyle Edmund became the latest player to call the Australian Open the best Grand Slam