Rybolovlev set to seal Monaco deal this month

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Russian businessman Dmitry Rybolovlev has confirmed his plans to complete the takeover of AS Monaco by the end of the year.

"We hope that all the agreements will be reached before the end of 2011 for the club to use the January transfer window for the possible purchase of new players," Rybolovlev's spokesman said on Thursday in a statement sent to Reuters.

"This will help strengthen the club for the remaining games of the 2011/12 season."

Monaco President Etienne Franzi welcomed the possible arrival of Rybolovlev, 93rd on the Forbes list of billionaires, who sold his stake in fertiliser producer Uralkali for $6.5 billion in June 2010.

"It's good news for AS Monaco and for French football in general," Franzi told French media this week.

Seven-times French champions Monaco, who reached the Champions League final in 2004, were relegated from Ligue 1 at the end of last season and have been struggling this term as they lie bottom of Ligue 2 with one win from 16 games.