Africa's richest man Aliko Dangote wants to buy Arsenal FC and "turn it around"

Joe Hall
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Aliko Dangote Arsenal fan
Dangote says he will buy Arsenal in "three to four years" (Source: Getty)

Africa's richest man Aliko Dangote wants to buy Arsenal within three to four years and turn the club's fortunes around.

The Nigerian cement magnate, worth an estimated £8.4bn, says he has no doubt he has the capital to complete a full takeover of the Premier League.

And the Arsenal fan believes he has the business acumen to achieve greater success than current American owner Stan Kroenke, worth an estimated £5.4bn.

Read more: Stan Kroenke lifts lid on why Arsenal prioritise business foundations over spending big on transfers

"It's not about buying Arsenal and just continuing with business as usual," Dangote told Bloomberg.

"It's about buying Arsenal and turning it around. I've run a very successful business and I think I can also run a very successful team."

Dangote held talks with former Arsenal shareholder Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith in 2010 about buying a 15.9 per cent stake in the club, but eventually backed out of the deal before the shares were sold to Kroenke a year later.

The 59-year-old's wealth has increased significantly in the last six years as he has gone from being the 463rd to 51st richest person in the world — although he lost a reported $4.4bn last year due to the depreciation of the Nigerian naira.

Yet he told Bloomberg he wants to wait until recent investments in gas and oil improve before launching a bid for the North London club.

"Maybe three to four years," said Dangote when asked when he was planning to make a move for Arsenal. "The issue is that we have more challenging headwinds. I need to get those out the way first and start having tailwinds. Then I'll focus on this."

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