Thierry Henry warned Arsenal supporters that a potential takeover by the Spotify founder, Daniel Ek, could take a very long time as he said the Swedish billionaire wanted to bring back the identity and DNA of the club.
Ek recently tweeted his interest in buying Arsenal on the night fans were protesting outside the Emirates Stadium against the owner Stan Kroenke. Kroenke, through his Kroenke Sports and Entertainment business, has said he has no interest in selling, but Ek continues to move forward with his plans.
He has the former Arsenal players Dennis Bergkamp and Patrick Vieira – as well as Henry – backing his bid and the club’s all-time leading goalscorer explained how the trio got involved.
“It is true,” he told Sky Sports of his involvement in a potential takeover bid. “Daniel is an Arsenal fan – he hasn’t said that for publicity, he has been an Arsenal fan for a long time. He approached us, we listened to him, when we knew first and foremost that he wanted to involve the fans we actually met the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust and told them what we wanted to do; bring them back on board.
“He wants to reinject the Arsenal DNA, the identity that is long gone. You don’t have Arsenal people there among the board that can sometimes show the right direction and that is what Daniel wants to do.
“He already said he collected the funds so he can make sure he can make a good bid. Now obviously they need to listen and see what they can do.”
With Kroenke steadfast in his plans to reject any formal offer, Henry concedes it will be a slow process. “A takeover is going to be very long and not easy if it ever happens,” he said. “Daniel will not move away, he will be there waiting to see if they want to sell, that is going to take a long time.
“We know what we want to do but first and foremost we need to make sure we can take over, if they are listening. Let’s see where it is going to go; he reached out. I don’t know now how far they went.
“I don’t have that type of money to talk about it and cannot talk like that about how much it is – that is between Daniel and the Kroenke family, if they dare to entertain the bid.”
Expanding on the importance of the supporters, Henry said: “That is what we want to bring, that DNA and identity back. If you had fans on the board that Super League would never have happened.”