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Volume 6 No. 212


Talk of a Kerala franchise in the newly proposed IMG-R league "has stroked a battle royale amongst investors, with a gaggle of them queue up for its ownership," according to Nikhil Jitendran of GOAL. Whilst the very notion of a parallel league to run alongside the I-League "is getting whipped by traditional club owners, a bevy of investors look to gain control of the Kerala franchise of the new league." According to the New Indian Express sources, the investors groups, which number close to a dozen, "are mostly composed of Non-Resident Indians." They are "hell-bent on promoting a Kochi-based club, with a view to grapple the frenzy for the game." A group of investors from the Thrissur district of Kerala "have planned an entity on a public-private partnership model" (GOAL, 8/21).

Former National Soccer League side Marconi Stallions is aiming to return to the top flight of Australian football and "will bid for a controlling stake" in the A-League Western Sydney Wanderers, according to Dominic Bossi of THE AGE. Marconi is eager to end its nine-year hiatus from professional sport and its "making an ambitious bid to purchase the licence of the flourishing club from its current owners, Football Federation Australia." Marconi President Vince Foti said his club will ''definitely'' join the bidding war for ownership of the Wanderers but are yet to submit its application to the governing body. Marconi's bid "is yet to leave the boardroom but under the proposed offer there will be no change to the Wanderers' name, brand, identity and colours." They "will likely train at Marconi Stadium in Bossley Park and play at Parramatta Stadium," if it was successful with its bid. However, Foti said that there "was a possibility the club could permanently move to Marconi Stadium if the venue underwent a significant redevelopment to increase the capacity and improve facilities" (THE AGE, 8/23).

A group of Scottish League 1 Rangers shareholders "intent on removing Ibrox directors from the board are to press on despite attempts to make peace with influential investors pushing for the changes." Clyde Blowers boss Jim McColl, who led a group of shareholders demanding an emergency meeting be held to force the removal of CEO Craig Mather, Finance Dir Brian Stockbridge and Non-Exec Dir Bryan Smart "has confirmed that the group remains committed to forcing changes at Ibrox" (SCOTSMAN, 8/22). ... After "some growing unease about the amount of time he is devoting to the cause of saving a football club that is not based in his constituency," Federation of Hearts Chair and Edinburgh South MP Ian Murray "presented his case for the ¬≠defence." Murray "estimated the amount of time he spends on business which relates" to Scottish Premiership Heart of Midlothian "as only four hours per week." Murray said, "Another thing I would say is that some people go swimming, collect stamps or go train spotting in their spare time, I am spending my spare time on Hearts. I don’t see what the problem is" (SCOTSMAN, 8/22).