Sheffield Wednesday: Milan assurance over buy-out

Owls chairman Milan Mandaric
Owls chairman Milan Mandaric
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Sheffield Wednesday chairman Milan Mandaric is adamant the financial troubles facing another club under the umbrella of owner-in-waiting Hafiz Mammadov will not affect them.

It emerged in France last week that RC Lens had their promotion to Ligue 1 suspended because of discrepancies in their budget for next season.

The issue concerns a €10 million fund due from Mammadov, who also owns shares in Atletico Madrid and FC Porto, which was not transferred into Lens’ accounts on Friday from Azerbaijan.

Gervais Martel, the president of the French outfit, blamed the hold-up on a public holiday in Azerbaijan, claiming that prevented money arriving from owner Mammadov. Martel said the financial problem was “not very serious” and expected it to be resolved in time for an

appeal which could be heard Thursday July 3 or Wednesday July 9.

Lens clinched a return to the French top flight last season but Mandaric is unconcerned by their financial difficulties.

“As far as I’m concerned, it (Lens situation) has got nothing to do with Sheffield Wednesday or our deal with Mr Mammadov,” he told The Star. “It is as simple as that.

“I’m not going to talk about other clubs’ situations because I’m not privileged to that information. I just wish everyone a good relationship for the future. That’s all I’m interested in.”

It was three weeks ago that Mammadov acquired Wednesday, but the takeover has yet to be ratified by the Football League. Mandaric hopes there will soon be an update regarding the buy-out. “I definitely believe there will be progress this week,” he said.

Wednesday’s players report back for pre-season training today and it remains unclear whether Chris Kirkland, Jose Semedo, Glenn Loovens and Oguchi Onyewu will be involved.

The quartet have yet to sign new contracts.

Owls: P39