AFRICA’S richest man Aliko Dangote will need to find about of €700m if he wants to purchase English Premier League side Arsenal after a recent valuation of the club costed the squad alone at of €626m.
Alhaji Dangote, 62, is currently Africa’s richest man and the 96th wealthiest man in the world, valued at $14.1bn by Bloomberg’s Billionaire’s Index. A passionate Arsenal fan, he has made several unsuccessful bids for the club over the last five years but each has been rebuffed by Arsenal are currently owned by Stan Kroenke, the American billionaire who owns the Gunners.
Over the last two years, Alhaji Dangote has put his plans to buy the club on hold as he focuses on building Africa’s largest refinery in Lagos. His Dangote Refinery in the Ibeju-Lekki suburb of Lagos is due to be completed in 2021 and the business mogul has stated that once that is completed, he will turn his attention back to Arsenal.
However, yesterday, the CIES Football Observatory ranked clubs in the top five European leagues on the value of their playing squad, with the Gunners coming out in 15th place with a value of €624m. That means that Alhaji Dangote may have to spend at least that value in order to acquire Arsenal, although that price is likely to be a lot higher, due to a club’s value not only being based on just the value of the playing squad.
Other costs, such as the value of the stadium will also have to be taken into account when selling a club. In the CIES Football Observatory ranking, Arsenal are one place below German side RB Leipzig, who are said to have a squad value of €626m and one place above fellow Premier League side Leicester City with an estimated squad value of €618m.
Due to Arsenal’s current poor form, its fans are determined to oust absentee owner Mr Kroenke, who rarely shows his face at the Emirates, while the club continues to look rudderless behind the scenes in their search for a route back to the top four. Arsenal fans would certainly welcome a change in ownership and Alhaji Dangote could radically change the club’s fortunes.