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Volume 6 No. 212


ManU unveiled its new kit for the '13-14 season, according to Thom Gibbs of the London TELEGRAPH. Gone "are the days of natty stripes, laced collars or new sponsors passing as an overhaul." These days it is "all fabrics hewn from by astronauts, sweat-elimination technology and a constrained cut" that will actually make players "16% better at throw-ins, but fans look 74% fatter." ManU does not disappoint with its new Nike effort, which is not only 23% lighter than previous Nike shirts but has actually, handilly, "also been designed to give the Reds the best chance of victory on the pitch." The new United effort "does feel a bit sober, a little disappointing, even." It is probably "still an improvement on the tablecloth-inspired effort of last season, though" (TELEGRAPH, 6/5).

The Australian Football League Commission will determine Melbourne's ability to mount a competitive challenge to the competition as early as next week when the AFL Demons "apply for urgently needed funding," according to Denham & Smith of THE AUSTRALIAN. The club "could also be forced to fight on another front" following Thursday's threat of a board challenge by Former Hawthorn President Jeff Kennett. Already "bracing itself for another dismal season on the field," it was confirmed Thursday that the club could face a '13 loss of close to A$3M ($2.8M). The club is carrying a current operating loss of A$1.2M "before interest is taken into account." As well, it has fines to be repaid to the league over its "tanking" infringement and potential staff pay cuts, which includes coach Mark Neeld, "a winner of five of his 32 games and contracted until the end of next year." New CEO Peter Jackson "is understood to be preparing to lobby the commission at a meeting next week for an injection of capital not only to stem cashflow problems, but to assist in rebuilding its collapsed football department" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 6/7).

Austrian basketball champion BC Vienna "did not fulfill the requirements for the Bundesliga license," according to KURIER. The license committee of the Austrian Basketball Bundesliga "has, at first instance, denied the license to the defending champion BC Vienna." The reason for the committee's decision is that the club does not fulfill the requirements of having youth teams participate in the state federation and in the Austrian youth championships. The club "can appeal the decision within 24 hours after it received the written decision" (KURIER, 6/6).

National Rugby League Cronulla Sharks "are bracing for another blow to their balance books -- this time in the form of a six-figure NRL salary cap breach," according to Josh Massoud of the DAILY TELEGRAPH. Financially crippled "thanks to legal fees and sponsor trepidation from the ASADA investigation, the Sharks will be fined as a result of the previous administration's failure to properly declare player payments" to salary cap auditor Ian Schubert last year. The fine "could be as much as" A$200,000, ($191,000), although the NRL "would not confirm a figure." The club -- and others that have transgressed -- "will be sent the breach notice as soon as next week." An NRL spokesperson said, "No breach notices have been issued at this stage." A significant part of the Sharks breach "relates to sponsorship payments that former venue security provider eGroup was asked to make to a player, who has since left the club." The security firm "made the payments," believed to be around A$80,000 across '11 and '12, "in the honest belief it would be correctly classified and declared to Schubert" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 6/7).

Laxey Partners Partner & Chair Colin Kingsworth "has been identified as the man who will buy" former Scottish Third Division Rangers CEO Charles Green's shares in the club, according to the SCOTSMAN. Kingsworth specializes in buying into undervalued companies and "making changes to their operations to increase shareholder dividends." Laxey "will take control" of Green's 1% stake in the Ibrox club. Kingsworth's other investments include the publishers of the cult adult comic Viz, "as well as property company British Land and investment company Alliance Trust" (SCOTSMAN, 6/6). The HERALD SCOTLAND reported the Rangers have put plans for an extraordinary general meeting of its shareholders "on hold." The club announced last month that it was to hold the EGM following reports that major shareholders were preparing to oust then-Chair Malcolm Murray and fellow Dir Philip Cartmell, "and replace them on the board with James Easdale and Chris Morgan." But since then, Murray "has resigned and handed his boardroom role" to former Manager Walter Smith. The club issued a statement to the London Stock Exchange Thursday, "confirming that plans for a shareholder meeting had been delayed." Easdale recently confirmed that he and his brother and business partner Sandy "hoped to secure a boardroom slot as they continue to increase their shareholding" (HERALD SCOTLAND, 6/6).