Former Arsenal shareholder Usmanov eyes Charlton takeover

Former Arsenal shareholder Alisher Usmanov

Former Arsenal shareholder Alisher Usmanov is reportedly interested in buying League One club Charlton Athletic.

Charlton were relegated from the Premier League 11 years ago and two seasons ago failed to survive in the Championship.

Usmanov was recently paid £600m by Stan Kroenke for his 30% stake in Arsenal as the American completed his takeover of the club. He and Kroenke had fallen out over the direction the Gunners should take.

The Uzbekistan billionaire has links to Everton through his business partner Farhad Moshiri, who has overseen a new wave of spending at the Merseyside club with little success. It was rumoured that he may put some of his fortune into Everton and grow his involvement at Goodison Park, but he appears to have turned his attention to Charlton.

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The Mirror reports that Charlton’s owner Roland Duchatelet wants £20m for the club that he bought for a similar sum four years ago. Athletic are rumoured to be losing £10m a year, and fans have regularly protested at his ownership.

This week Duchatelet described investing in football as “the mistake of my life”.

He said: “My conclusion is that the recipes from the business world are totally unsuccessful in football. It was a mistake.

“The football business doesn’t suit me. Too irrational.

“If you want to lose real money, buy a football club…Investing in football was the mistake of my life.”

It appears that Usmanov now has the chance to run a club to his own tastes, if he completes the deal.