Football: QPR waiting on Wright bid

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The Independent Online
Queen's Park Rangers' new chairman, Clive Berlin, is waiting to hear confirmation that millionaire supporter Chris Wright has lost interest in buying the relegated London club before he opens discussions with two more potential purchasers.

Berlin was ordered to sell Rangers after the owner, Richard Thompson, stepped down from the board of directors last week, and is still hopeful that Wright, the 50-year-old head of the Chrysalis television and music production company, will make a bid despite latest indications to the contrary.

Thompson Investments, the major shareholders in QPR, is believed to want between pounds 8m and pounds 10m for its controlling interest in the club and Wright has said he would be interested at "a reasonable price".

A spokesman for Wright said: "I think it is fair to say the likelihood of Chris continuing his interest is very, very low."

But Berlin said: "I need to hear from Chris personally before I can comment any further on this, and don't expect that to happen for a few days yet.

"When he came to the club and was shown around at the weekend he quite naturally told me he wanted to go away and think about it for a while.

"I cannot react to what a spokesman is supposed to have said. It is, in any case, just what you would expect a spokesman to say in a situation like this. We certainly have not had a definite decision yet from Chris."

Berlin revealed two other potential buyers have made contact with him, as well as the two who were already being considered along with Wright.

However, he dismissed speculation that the Glasgow Rangers chairman, David Murray, and the Scottish champions' former manager, Graeme Souness, are among them. "Neither of those stories are true," he said. "The people involved are close to the club but it would not be right to reveal their identities.

"We are not in a desperate hurry to sell the club. You must take time and make sure the interested parties have real commitment."

However, the Thompson family have been reported as wanting to redirect their football finances into Leeds and, that being the case, would probably like to sell QPR as soon as possible.

Ken Wagstaff, a former Hull player of the 1960s and 1970s, is at the centre of a takeover bid at Boothferry Park. Peter Lincoln, a spokesman for Tigers 2000, blamed the club's relegation to the Third Division on the chairman, Martin Fish, the manager, Terry Dolan, and the assistant manager Jeff Lee.

"We believe it is the culmination of bad management, zero investment and a lack of ambition," he said.

"The crucial first steps which must be taken before the club can emerge from the present abyss are the resignation of Martin Fish as chairman followed by a full reconstruction of the directors."

Krylya Sovetov, from the Volga river city of Samara, have been banned from playing at home for three matches after supporters hurled bottles and stones at visiting Moscow Spartak coaches and players. The punishment imposed by the Russian league followed the club's 1-1 draw on 8 May with Spartak, who equalised with a late penalty.