Writer: Johnny Baguette
Date:Friday June 1 2007
The uncertainty intensifies. For a few weeks now Thaksin Shinawatra's interest in Manchester City Football Club has been referred to across world media as a 100-120 million quid 'Takeover.'
In the last couple of days however, that relentless takeover angle has been replaced by talk of merely buying a stake in the club. To quote the Manchester Evening News: 'Having initially given the impression a deal would be concluded for Shinawatra to buy the 29% stake of chairman John Wardle and business partner David Makin by the end of this month, talks have dragged on, with paperwork now being handled by Shinawatra's lawyers.'
'The 29% stake?' That doesn't sound like the total takeover we have been drip fed for weeks or the luxury financial position regularly suggested. There are so many unanswered questions it's difficult to know where to start. Is a gradual full takeover planned or is this only an investment? What happened at Liverpool? Is there opposition to 'Frank's' bid from other shareholders? Is he getting cold feet? Are his assets frozen in Thailand following the past week's political events? Can Wardle and Makin get out of town quick enough? Is there still time for a rival bid to come in even though Ray Ranson has held his hands up?
The resignation from Parma and uplifting comments from the well respected Claudio Ranieri, the man who is already in some circles being referred to as 'The Blue Pope' ready to perform miracles, have only added to the sense of bewilderment. Talk of meetings with advisors in London point to an appointment at Eastlands, but now we hear that Juventus are after him.
Throughout all this, not one word of red tape avoiding reassurance from the City Board directly to the fans which is hardly surprising considering their lack of a clear voice throughout that last turgid season. We need this frustrating uncertainty resolved City, and quickly.
Back to the facts. Our pre-season plans rest on a knife edge. In the worryingly devoid of Manchester City transfer market, one Nicolas Anelka has the front page of France Football this morning. Unbelievably, he is rumoured to be next up on Sir Taggart's exploding shopping list headlining the transfer activity many of City's rivals are already heavily involved in.
As an aside, how can anyone else compete with the spending power of CSKA Chelski and the rags anyway??? CelticRangers Syndrome is now in full effect in the English Premiership.
In the meantime, hang on in there Blues, something has to give any day now. Standby for Touchdown, or Take Off...
Date:Friday June 1 2007
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