Josh Kroenke responds to Jude Bellingham transfer ‘request’ during Arsenal pre-season tour
One Arsenal fan was fortunate enough to watch the friendly against Orlando City from the director’s box and used the opportunity to put a transfer suggestion to Josh Kroenke
Josh Kroenke is said to have reacted positively when an Arsenal fan urged him to bring Jude Bellingham to the Emirates during an interaction on the club’s pre-season tour.
Kroenke, the son of Gunners owner Stan, serves as a director for the North Londoners and has overseen a busy summer of transfer activity.
Arsenal have completed four signings – including the marquee £45million capture of Gabriel Jesus from Manchester City – while Oleksandr Zinchenko’s unveiling is imminent. Meanwhile, up to eight more players could leave as Mikel Arteta trims his squad.
Having added Fabio Vieira to their ranks, the Gunners are linked with a further addition in midfield. While Leicester star Youri Tielemans is believed to be a target, one Arsenal fan thinks the Kroenkes should make a statement of their ambitions for the club by signing Bellingham.
The Borussia Dortmund wonderkid, 19, is one of Europe’s hottest properties and has been linked with Liverpool.
It is understood it would take a nine-figure bid to prise him from the Westfalenstadion this summer, so Europe’s giant clubs are expected to bide their time and come calling next year.
Arsenal were not believed to be monitoring Bellingham, who has already earned 15 England caps, but he may now be on the radar of club chiefs thanks to the efforts of one fan.
Aston Mack – who took part in the launch of the Gunners’ 2022/23 away kit – and was a special guest for the 3-1 pre-season victory over Orlando City on Thursday.
Mack was invited to the director’s box and it was here where he was able to talk transfers with the club’s hierarchy. Recounting his conversation to fan channel AFTV, he said: “I was actually in the box with Stan, Josh, Vinai [Venkatesham, chief executive] and [technical director] Edu. It was cool.
“You know what’s interesting, I know we have a lot of feelings [towards] him, but Stan, he wants to win you know. He was talking about Champions League while we were in there.
“And I told him, ‘Listen, if you want to get us excited, if you really want to get that connection back, get us Bellingham. Really, really get us going and act like a big club again’. Josh was like, ‘I’m hearing you, I’m hearing you’. Josh was really into it.”
While signing Bellingham might be a pipe dream for Arsenal fans at this stage, the Kroenkes’ ambitions and reported interest in the idea of bringing the Englishman to North London will only serve to increase anticipation for the upcoming season.