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Just In: Henry backs Ek takeover, reveals talks with Him

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Thierry Henry has confirmed reports that he, Dennis Bergkamp and Patrick Vieira have been in contact with Daniel Ek as the Spotify founder firms up plans for a proposed takeover of Arsenal.

As fans protested against existing owner Stan Kroenke and his role in the proposed formation of a European Super League, Ek, citing long-standing support for the club, announced his interest in buying the Gunners.

In the 11 days that have passed, the 38-year-old Swede has reiterated his intentions by claiming to have raised the necessary funds for a deal reported to be worth around £2 billion.

In response, Stan and Josh Kroenke released a statement dismissing suggestions they would be open to selling Arsenal.

Speaking on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football, Henry revealed why he was happy to field a call from the billionaire entrepreneur.

“It is true. Daniel Ek is an Arsenal fan. He did not say it for any publicity, he has been an Arsenal fan for a very long time.

“He approached us, we listened to him. And we knew, first and foremost, that he wanted to involve the fans. He wants to re-inject the Arsenal DNA, the identity that I think is long gone.”

He added: “He already – I’ll give you something – reached out [to the Kroenkes] and already said himself that he had collected the funds to make sure that he can put in a good bid.

“They now need to listen. A lot of people have been screaming that they want the owner out. We are trying to offer a solution involving the fans and getting the DNA of the club back. There needs to be a discussion, but he reached out.

“I think it is going to be long and not easy if it does ever happen. One thing that I want to reiterate is that Daniel will not move away, he will be there waiting to see if they want to sell.

“That is going to take a very long time, we know what we want to do but first and foremost we need to make sure that we can take over, if they are listening.”

Henry also confirmed that Ek had already met with the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust to outline his vision for the club.

“Daniel is an honest man, transparent,” he said. “Fans want to know what might happen at their club.

“We had a discussion with the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust and he was very open with them and he wants to be open. We told them what we wanted to do. To bring them back on board.

“Make them part of the meetings and knowing what’s happening. You need to put the DNA back into the club.

“He wants to buy the club, he reached out, and there is going to be a bid. If I wasn’t part of the bid, I would have backed it up from afar.”

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📺 Miquel Azeez is Simply Outstanding, Watch As He Nutmegs 3 Defenders To Score A Goal

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Miquel Azeez Has Been Outstanding For Arsenal Un23 side this season, he continues his great run of form yesterday as score a man of the match goal to hand Arsenal Un23 side a victory in the final game of the season.

📺 Watch The Great Goal…

https://twitter.com/ArsenalAcademy/status/1392523112919486473?s=19

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Arsenal to agree deal with Italian head-coach

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Maurizio Sarri could reportedly be in line for a surprise return to Premier League with either Arsenal or Tottenham.

 

The Italian tactician has been out of work since being given the boot by the Serie A giants Juventus last August – in spite of guiding the Old Lady to their 36th Scudetto.

 

Sarri is understood to be eager to get back in the dugout next term, with Italian journalist Carlo Laudisa stating the 62-year-old could very well return to the English top-flight.

 

During an appearance on Radio Punto Nuovo, the Gazzetta dello Sport journalist said: “Sarri could go to England.

 

“The Tottenham solution being the most plausible, but the Arsenal bench could also become free, as [Mikel] Arteta has missed all the Gunners’ season goals.”

 

Carlo’s claim that Maurizio could return to England comes in spite of reports the veteran coach is against the idea of resuming his career abroad.

 

The former Napoli leader is reportedly concerned about upping sticks during the COVID-19 pandemic in case he is unable to return to his homeland.

 

He enjoyed success during his sole campaign in charge of Chelsea, guiding the Blues to UEFA Europa League glory with a 4-1 win over Arsenal in Baku.

 

If Sarri is indeed open to managing the Gunners, he’ll no doubt be keeping tabs on developments at the club over the coming weeks.

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Video Highlights, Full Match Analysis: Chelsea 0 – 1 Arsenal

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Emile Smith Rowe denied Chelsea the chance to cement their top-four status as he took advantage of Jorginho’s howler to give Arsenal a 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues would have all but secured their Champions League qualification with a victory which would have taken them 10 points clear of Liverpool, who have four games left to play, but after making seven changes ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup final, struggled to create clear-cut chances.

Kai Havertz should have put them ahead 10 minutes in when he intercepted Gabriel’s loose pass for Pablo Mari and raced clean through, but then fired over Bernd Leno’s bar with only his compatriot to beat. Moments later Jorginho’s equally poor back-pass was kept out by Kepa Arrizabalaga at full stretch, but Smith Rowe was on hand to bundle home after being teed up by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Chelsea were dominant for the large majority of the remaining 75 minutes without forcing Leno into any uncomfortable saves until the final minute. They did beat him through Pulisic’s close-range header from a corner, which was swiftly denied by a VAR review, before the German produced a stunning stop to tip Kurt Zouma’s header onto the crossbar, which was then rattled by Olivier Giroud’s shot on the rebound.

Player Ratings

Chelsea: Kepa (6), James (6), Azpilicueta (6), Silva (6), Zouma (6), Chilwell (5), Jorginho (4), Gilmour (5), Pulisic (5), Mount (6), Havertz (5).

Subs: Hudson-Odoi (6), Giroud (6), Ziyech (5).

Arsenal: Leno (7), Gabriel (6), Mari (7), Holding (6), Tierney (7), Partey (6), Elneny (8), Saka (5), Odegaard (6), Smith Rowe (7), Aubameyang (5).

Subs: Bellerin (6), Lacazette (5), Chambers (6).

Man of the match: Mohamed Elneny

What the managers said…

Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel told Sky Sports: “We had three days, we are on a good run, we had a good mood. The choices were not so good today from my side for the line-up so that’s on me. We were unlucky, of course. But we did everything today to lose.

“I’m not happy with my line-up. It’s easy to say afterwards. But it was too many changes, I should not have done it like this. It’s something in particular – but I will not tell you!”

 

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta told Sky Sports: “I don’t know how they’re going to try from the outside but from the inside, nothing is broken.

“They’re going to put things on me that I never said, you can see the spirit of the team from the first minute. You can never doubt their efforts and how much they try.”

Match stats

  1. Arsenal completed their first Premier League double over Chelsea since the 2003-04 season, while this was their first league win at Stamford Bridge since October 2011, ending an eight-game winless run there (D2 L6).
  2. Chelsea suffered only their third defeat in 26 matches in all competitions under Thomas Tuchel (W17 D6), with all three defeats coming at Stamford Bridge.
  3. Arsenal have won three consecutive away Premier League matches without conceding for the first time since May 2013 under Arsène Wenger.
  4. Arsenal have had a different player aged younger than 21 score in each of their last three Premier League matches against Chelsea – Gabriel Martinelli in January 2020, Bukayo Saka in December 2020 and Emile Smith Rowe tonight.

What’s next?

Chelsea are off to Wembley in the FA Cup final on Saturday, where they will face Leicester City; Kick-off at 5.15pm.

Arsenal’s penultimate game of the season is also in London, with a trip to Crystal Palace next Wednesday night; Kick-off at 7pm.

📽️ Watch The Video Highlights:

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