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Pattaya Daily News

03 May 2007 :: 11:05:14 am 7313

Football-Mad Thaksin In Rival Bid To Buy Manchester City FC

Thaksin Shinnawattra, who has been living in London since he was ousted from power on Sept 19, 2006, in between travelling around Asia, visiting China, Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore, may soon be able to realize his fond dream of owning a major, British Premier League football club.
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Thaksin is competing with a rivals American consortium for the ownership of Manchester City football club, “the Blues”. He is currently the forerunner or even “firm favourite” for ownership.

If he does manage to win control of Man City, Mr. Thaksin will join such illustrious names as Malcom Glazer (owner of Manchester United) and ,Mr Thaksin Roman Abramovich, (owner of Chelsea). Both of whom are non-native football club owners.


“The Blues” may not have the kudos or reputation of “the Red Devils”, Man. United as they are known internationally, but nevertheless they are still in the Premiership League. (Incidentally, for you sports fanatics out the Derby game between Man UTD and Man City is on Sat May 5 – kick off 12.45 pm.)

Mr. Thaksin has apparently made an indicative proposal to the board of Manchester City that may possibly lead to an offer being made for the company, according to the London Stock Exchange. An anonymous US consortium has also been made bid for the club, so Mr. Thaksin may have some stiff competition.
This will be Mr Thaksin’s second attempt to buy an English soccer team, he made a bid for Liverpool two years ago. One of the potential benefits for Man. City is the prospect of new players with Mr. haksin’s promise to spend €73.5m to buy new players from next season. He will have to offer a sum somewhere near €146.45m to win control of the club.
Taking the lead: Former Thai PM Thaksin Shinawatra, seen here meeting Tony Blair, has been given the green light to check City’s accounts)

Mr Thaksin is apparently intending to purchase Man.City purely from his own funds. His financial advisers are privy to the club’s non-disclosed accounts, and he has begun to discuss with the board ways of radically reducing the club’s massive debts of £60m.

Apart from football, Mr. Thaksin’s other major sport’s love is golf, which he has been playing avidly since the 2006 coup, in between travelling Asia. He will be well pleased at a recent coup of a different kind, having just won a unanimous vote to take over the TPGA presidency from former cabinet minister Pongsak Raktapongpisal.

Manchester City was formed in 1894 and has spent the last four years in the Premier League. It was English champion in 1937 and 1968 and won the FA Cup four times, the last in 1969. City also won the European Cup Winners Cup in 1970 — its only international silverware.

The club moved into a new 47,500-seat stadium in 2003. The team is currently 13th in the 20-team Premier League.

While leader of Thailand, Thaksin led a 2004 attempt to buy a 30 percent stake in Liverpool. The deal was never finalized, and Liverpool was taken over by American businessmen Tom Hicks and George Gillett Jr. in March.

Manchester United and Aston Villa are also owned by Americans. Chelsea, West Ham, Fulham and Portsmouth are also under foreign ownership.

Being in politics is like being a football coach. You have to be smart enough to understand the game, and dumb enough to think it’s important!!

Eugene McCarthy

Reporter : Methawee   Photo : Internet   Category : Sports News

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