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Arsenal must replace Adebayor, says Usmanov's partner

PUBLISHED: 18:03 30 July 2009 | UPDATED: 16:20 07 September 2010

Arsenal's Togolese striker Emmanuel Adebayor shows his frustration during their Premier League match against Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium, London, on November 15, 2008. Aston Villa won 2-0.     AFP PHOTO / Glyn Kirk

FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY Additional licence required for any commercial/promotional use or use on TV or internet (except identical online version of newspaper) of Premier League/Football League photos. Tel DataCo +44 207 2981656. Do not alter/modify photo. (Photo credit should read GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

Arsenal's Togolese striker Emmanuel Adebayor shows his frustration during their Premier League match against Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium, London, on November 15, 2008. Aston Villa won 2-0. AFP PHOTO / Glyn Kirk FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY Additional licence required for any commercial/promotional use or use on TV or internet (except identical online version of newspaper) of Premier League/Football League photos. Tel DataCo +44 207 2981656. Do not alter/modify photo. (Photo credit should read GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

2008 AFP

THE co-owner of Red & White Holdings, Arsenal s second largest shareholder, has raised doubts over the strength of the Gunners squad ahead of the new season and says they must spend the £25m received for Emmanuel Adebayor on buying a replacement. Iranian

THE co-owner of Red & White Holdings, Arsenal's second largest shareholder, has raised doubts over the strength of the Gunners' squad ahead of the new season and says they must spend the £25m received for Emmanuel Adebayor on buying a replacement.

Iranian-born Farhad Moshiri is the business partner of Alisher Usmanov and joint owner of Red & White, who hold a 25 per cent stake in Arsenal.

In a move that will raise concerns over their level of interference in club matters, Moshiri, who along with Usmanov has not been invited on to the Gunners board - unlike leading shareholder Stan Kroenke - questioned the amount of money Arsene Wenger has available.

"Based on our analysis, any money is very limited and possibly spent already and I don't think there are any spare funds with the exception of Adebayor's proceeds," said Moshiri this week.

"There is no question that it is a talented squad but there have been very limited additions and you cannot help but feel that there is still not enough depth to that squad.

"To compete on a number of fronts over a long season, especially with the Africa Cup of Nations when we are going to lose Kolo Toure as well, that is going to make it very difficult," he continued, before adding: "I think there are certain risks but I have confidence in Arsene to keep us within the top four, but you cannot ignore the risk."

The 54-year-old investor, who has been very much in the background since Red & White first became involved with Arsenal in 2007, was also outspoken on the subject of Adebayor.

"He did not have the best of seasons last year so I can understand the fans' feelings, but the bottom line is we are down a proven striker," added Moshiri.

"He averaged 20 goals a season so unless we replace him with a striker of that talent we will be weaker.

"That is the most worrying thing because Manchester City, with their enormous firepower, are one of the challengers for the fourth spot and I would have felt much better if he had been sold to any other club."

Adebayor, right, made his debut for City in their defeat to Kaizer Chiefs in South Africa at the weekend, and has said he believes that Arsenal fans drove him out of the club.

"The way the fans behaved towards me was not nice at all. I can't understand why they were after me," said Adebayor.

"I did my best for them and I was very happy there. I scored 30 goals in a season - it's not my fault that Milan, Barcelona or Real Madrid wanted to sign me."

"In any summer, Barcelona try to sign Cesc Fabregas. But the fans never turned on him.


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