Date:Thursday June 1 2006
With the freshly broken story that Arsenal are to be investigated for their involement with Belgian club Beveren, the board have acted swiftly to deny any wrong doing and have issued a statement.
Tonight's screening of 'News Night' will look at how an investigation into susspected mafia involvment with the tiny club led to the discovery that Arsenal Football Club had issued a loan to the consortium that owns Beveren.
Until further investigations take place, everything is a bit sketchy, and as I'm not knowledgable on the whole economics scene, this is all very confusing, I guess this will become a little clearer after tonights program. Until then, here's the statement issued by the board.
'Arsenal Football Club is aware that BBC Newsnight is carrying a story this evening purporting to describe Arsenal's relationship with Belgian football club, Beveren.
Arsenal does not normally make public its agreements with third parties. However, Arsenal can confirm that it has had a technical relationship with Beveren since 2001. This relationship has a number of benefits to both clubs such as providing a platform to share coaching methods and techniques as well as facilitating the option of players being loaned between the clubs. For example, during the course of the relationship, Arsenal players David Grondin, Liam Chilvers, John Halls and Graham Stack all spent successful loan periods at Beveren as did Emmanuel Eboue, who played in a number of trial matches with Arsenal whilst contracted to Beveren. Such was the latter player's success, Arsenal subsequently signed Eboue on a permanent basis.
In addition, Arsenal confirms that it has never owned, directly or indirectly, any shares in Beveren or had any power whatsoever to influence its management or administration. It did in 2001 provide funds of 1,570,703 Euros by way of loan to a member of the consortium to assist in stabilising the finances of Beveren.
At no time has anyone at Arsenal been contacted by any regulatory or investigatory body with respect to its relationship with Beveren. Arsenal and all its staff have acted properly throughout, in accordance with all applicable rules and regulations, and in the best interests of Beveren, Arsenal and the broader footballing community. '
Date:Thursday June 1 2006
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