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Volume 7 No. 83

Franchises

The Scottish Rugby Union is "edging closer to a controversial takeover" of Premiership Rugby side Worcester Warriors -- with the governing body on a "shortlist of two" to purchase the club, according to Rob Robertson of the Scottish DAILY MAIL. It is a deal that would have "major repercussions for rugby on both sides of the border" and has "already caused dissent within the Scottish rugby community and supporters of the West Midlands outfit." It is believed that the SRU wants to buy the club as a base for Scottish players to play in England's top league, although it has, thus far, refused to comment on its interest. A decision is expected by the end of this week, with the only other interested party being former League Two side Swindon Town Chair Jed McCrory. The SRU lodged its bid, the value of which has not been revealed, and "must now wait to see if that will be accepted." Even if it does "win the race, there will still be hurdles to overcome." The Rugby Football Union will have the "final say on whether the deal can go through" and it "may not welcome a rival union running a club in the English Premiership." An SRU takeover could also be opposed by European Professional Club Rugby, which runs the Champions and Challenge Cups, "on the grounds of conflict of interest" as it also owns Pro14 sides Edinburgh Rugby and Glasgow Warriors (DAILY MAIL, 12/11).

League Two side Yeovil said reports that it is in talks to sell the club are "without substance." On Sunday, reports said that the club was "in discussions with a consortium of local businessmen and Yeovil fans." Yeovil "categorically denied" that a takeover was imminent, after reports suggested the parties were hoping for a "resolution" by early January (BBC, 12/11).

Real Madrid said that it "will reimburse ticket costs for club members and fans who travel to Abu Dhabi for the Club World Cup." The club, which arrived in the UAE on Sunday, is preparing for Wednesday's Club World Cup semifinal against host Al Jazira (ESPN.com, 12/12).

Atlético Madrid will play Egyptian side Al Ahly in Alexandria, Egypt, later this month in a "Match for Peace" to raise funds for the families of victims of the Nov. 24 terror attack in Egypt. The match will take place at the 84,000-capacity Borgh-al-Arab Stadium on Dec. 30. The clubs will donate 100% of the revenue to the relatives of victims. More than 300 people were killed and 128 injured when a bomb exploded inside a mosque on the Sinai Peninsula (ESPN.com, 12/12).