Stan Kroenke’s sports teams have been struggling recently.
The 69-year-old is Arsenal’s largest shareholder and misfortune for his clubs in the US has followed to England’s top flight.
The Gunners have lost seven matches in all competitions since their 2-1 home defeat against Watford at the end of January. This has seen Wenger’s side tumble out of the Premier League title race in frustrating fashion once more and their struggles mirror those across the pond.
In an article on the Denver Post, they outlined the key issues surrounding teams that are underperforming under Kroenke’s ownership – which has seemingly been taken over by son Josh.
“The [Colorado] Rapids, who were a pleasant surprise a year ago, have forgotten how to get off a shot, much less score a goal.
“As with the other two teams in a Denver sports empire built by his father, Josh has opened the family checkbook to upgrade the talent. A heavy bet on 38-year-old goalkeeper Tim Howard, being paid a $2.48 million salary in 2017, has yet to return big dividends. The Rapids have won only once in seven games, three of which Howard missed by losing his cool and getting suspended. Want to find the Rapids in the standings? Start at the bottom.
“Are the Nuggets, Avs and Rapids being properly managed? The fans of Denver are bighearted and forgiving, but they’re no fools. They ain’t buying whatever Kroenke is selling. The Nuggets ranked dead last, 30th of 30 NBA teams, in attendance during the 2016-17 season.
“The Avalanche finished 25th of 30 NHL teams in attendance, ahead of places like Florida and Arizona, where folks have a natural aversion to ice. The Rapids? Yes, the season’s young and spring weather in Colorado can be fickle. But their home crowds are among the bottom three in the league.
“There’s no quibble with the cash Kroenke Sports & Entertainment has thrown at its big-league problems in Denver. The Kroenke family isn’t cheap. But it hasn’t exactly been smart money.”
Arsenal aren’t in crisis mode and therefore not doing as badly in comparison, but the similarities are there for all to see. The club are facing the very real possibility that they will not qualify for UEFA Champions League football, the first time in two decades.
Kroenke himself admitted last year that he didn’t buy stakes in Arsenal to win trophies, whilst another billionaire shareholder in Alisher Usmanov revealed that using Wenger as a scapegoat ignores the real issue – which lie with holding the main shareholder responsible.
“I do not think that the coach alone is to be blamed for what is happening, some continuity is needed. All the responsibility for the fate of the club rests with the main shareholder [Kroenke],” Usmanov stated.