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SBD Global/November 22, 2013/FranchisesPrint All
Honorary Inter Milan President Massimo Moratti "has hinted that the club could try and build a new stadium," according to FOOTBALL ITALIA. New Owner Erick Thohir "is in Milan this week to meet with governor of the Lombardy region Roberto Maroni." The Italian oil tycoon has claimed that Wednesday's "meeting implied the potential of building a new ground at the site of the current Fiera Exhibition Centre in the city." Moratti said, "We spoke about the Expo center. It was only natural to speak about the consequences of potentially building there" (FOOTBALL ITALIA, 11/20). XINHUA reported Thohir claimed that "one of his desires is to invigorate Serie A and make it great as before." He said, "For me the most important thing is making Serie A big again like it used to be in Asia, where there's a huge market. As I said at the meeting with other club owners on Monday, we must work together to make Serie A the best League in the world." Thohir hinted that Inter "could build their own stadium." He said, "For the first one or two years, the management at Inter will be working very hard to increase revenue, as I think there is real potential to exploit foreign markets. After that we will look at whether to remain at San Siro or build a new stadium" (XINHUA, 11/20).
Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber on Tuesday revealed that David Beckham's agreement to purchase an expansion team at a discounted rate of $25M "expires on Dec. 31," according to Brian Straus of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED. But Beckham "needs more capital to secure the soccer specific stadium he hopes to build," and the MLS BOG "will not approve Beckham as a club owner and partner until he finalizes a stadium plan." Garber said that he "could imagine Miami being aboard" in '17 or '18. Straus wrote that timeline "would appear" to give Beckham "ample time." There is "almost no chance" MLS will "cut ties if he's unable to secure a stadium deal over the next six weeks." MLS "could either extend the initial agreement or renegotiate for a slightly higher expansion fee" (SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, 11/20).
THE KING AND I: The AP's Tom Reynolds reported NBA Miami Heat F LeBron James said of possibly teaming up with Beckham to purchase an MLS franchise in Miami, "I wish it was easy. We're working on it. We'll see what happens" (AP, 11/20).
Youth players at Liverpool were "stunned to be told" that Academy head coach Rodolfo Borrell has been sacked, along with director Frank McParland, in what appears to be "a strengthening of Brendan Rodgers’ position at the club," according to Ian Herbert of the London INDEPENDENT. Borrell is "held in huge esteem by the Academy players, many of whom consider him to be a supremely good coach." McParland was also "respected within the Kirkby training base as the individual who would enforce discipline when required." However, the two men’s departures after four years at the club "seems to have stemmed from their doubts about some aspects of the academy’s future direction, as it develops under Rodgers." Rodgers has "influenced appointments" to the Academy in the past six months, with Neil Critchley arriving from Crewe Alexandra to run the U18s after Steve Cooper’s contract "was not renewed at the end of last season" (INDEPENDENT, 11/21). In London, Chris Bascombe reported Liverpool said that they "will make no comment, but it has come as a surprise after the Merseyside club appeared to have ended a prolonged, tumultuous period at youth level." Rodgers, however, has been "keen to add his own staff" over the course of his 18-month reign and it is possible a division re-surfaced as new coaches tried to assert their own authority on issues of coaching and recruitment (TELEGRAPH, 11/21).