SEPTEMBER 1, 2007
The takeover of Queens Park Rangers
Queens Park Rangers Football Club has announced that Flavio Briatore and Bernie Ecclestone have made an offer to buy the soccer team. The current chairman Gianni Paladini will remain as chairman while Briatore, Bruno Michel and Alejandro Agag will join the board. The deal is rumoured to be worth around $60m and will mean that QPR will not have to go into administration. The club has struggled since dropping out of the Premier League in 1996.
Established in 1882 when two previous teams merged, Queens Park Rangers was so named as most of its players came from the Queens Park district on London. The team became a professional organisation in 1889 but did not find a permanent home until they moved into Loftus Road in 1917. The team moved gradually up the league tables and in 1967 caused a shock by becoming the first Third Division team to win the League Cup. Under managers such as Alec Stock, Dave Sexton and Terry Venables the club remained in the top rank but won very little. QPR was one of the founders of the Premier League in 1992.
The club was floated on the Alternative Investments Market in 1996 but went into administration in 2001. This left the team a big debt and there was much discontent amongst the directors.
What is interesting is not the news of the takeover, which has been rumoured for some time, but the names of the directors, underlining the closeness between Briatore and Agag.