We are here to stay

Dennis Bergkamp has said the consortium led by Spotify Daniel Ek has not given up on their attempted takeover of Arsenal.

Ek approached Bergkamp along with two other club legends — Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira — to help formulate a proposal worth around £1.8 billion which was rejected by owners Kroenke Sports Enterprises.

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KSE continue to publicly insist they have no interest in selling the club and will not consider any offers despite ongoing hostility from supporters towards their ownership, with another protest planned ahead of Sunday’s final Premier League home game against Brighton.

But Bergkamp told Dutch website VI: “We cannot force anyone to sell. I have understood that Daniel, apart from his offer, has reached out twice to Josh Kroenke and his bankers.

“Whatever the intentions of Kroenke, it would be good to at least have talks together. In the interest of the club. But whatever happens, Daniel is not a quitter and so are we as football guys. We are here to stay.

“The strange thing is that we cannot imagine how the current players must feel, because we have always played for the title. We know how the fans are feeling. We had a meeting with a delegation of fans. We can feel they are getting more enthusiastic as well. That very stimulating.”

Bergkamp, who scored 87 goals in 315 league appearances for Arsenal and was part of their “Invincibles” team of 2003-04, believes the club need a change of ownership to arrest their decline, now facing a fifth season without Champions League football.

“Just like Patrick and Thierry I don’t recognize the Arsenal of my time,” he added. “In the DNA of Arsenal there is a ambition to play for silverware, to never accept any kind of surrender. That mentality has slowly disappeared.

“I feel there is a bit of resignation about the current situation and that is worrying. Like its normal for the club, considering the financial differences, to play in the middle of the table. That’s not Arsenal. The DNA of Arsenal must be restored.

“You have to begin at the top. That’s why this takeover is crucial. Arsenal can go further with an owner that gets a football club isn’t just any kind of a company. It doesn’t matter how much money there is in English football, Arsenal is and always will be a football club.”

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