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Manchester City Football Club buy Melbourne Heart

From the Guardian:

Manchester City buy A-League’s Melbourne Heart.  Manchester City, in partnership with a group of owners of NRL side the Melbourne Storm, have acquired A-League franchise the Melbourne Heart.

The Football Federation Australia (FFA) approved the acquisition on Thursday.

Melbourne Heart bought by Manchester City

Harry Kewell at Melbourne Heart

The move will allow the new owners to assume responsibility for all existing obligations of the Heart, effective immediately. The Storm’s ownership group will be minority shareholders with a 20% stake.

The Manchester City chief executive Ferran Soriano said he was excited about the opportunity to make the Heart one of the most successful soccer clubs in Australia and throughout the region.

“We believe the strong sports culture of Melbourne combined with the football and commercial expertise within our consortium will make for a powerful combination both on and off the pitch,” Soriano said in a statement on Thursday.

The FFA chief executive, David Gallop, welcomed the acquisition of Heart’s licence as a huge vote of confidence in the future of the A-League.

“Manchester City and their Australian partners have made a strategic investment and I welcome them to our growing competition. It’s another sign that the world is taking notice of Australian football,” Gallop said. “Manchester City and their partners will bring a high level of expertise in football and sports business matters and that can only strengthen the Melbourne Heart and the Hyundai A-League as a whole.”‘


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