Palace fears a coup by Gaddafi

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The Independent Football

Crystal Palace fans said yesterday they were horrified by reports that Libya's Muammar Gaddafi was planning to buy the newly promoted Premiership Club and said he could face a revolt on the terraces.

Clive Betts, the Labour MP and member of the Independent Football Commission, said: "We've been pushing for a test for people who buy a controlling stake in a football club - for them to be declared fit and proper - for some time... The fact that someone like Gaddafi could just take over the club is indicative of the need for football to regulate its finances."

The football-loving Libyan leader already has a 5 per cent stake in the Italian club Juventus. Buying Palace would play well in his own country where football is hugely popular, with the biggest teams attracting 100,000 supporters.

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