Uzbek billionaire Alisher Usmanov has further increased his stake in Arsenal to 23%.

The purchase is estimated to have cost the billionaire in the region of £6million at some £10,000 a share as his investment company Red and White Holdings Limited have upped their holding by around 2%.

Even though the Arsenal board maintain they are not about to sell up and the current financial figures show there is no need for a wealthy individual backer, the latest announcement will continue to fuel speculation Usmanov is preparing to launch a hostile takeover.

A statement read: "Red and White Holdings Limited ('Red & White') announces, in accordance with its intentions stated on the 30th August, that it has increased its shareholding and now holds a 23% stake in Arsenal Holdings plc ('Arsenal')."