Vincent Tan: Running Cardiff Is Like Doing A PhD In Football Management

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VINCENT Tan plans to buy another club in Europe and one in the MLS after “learning a lot” during his turbulent four-year spell in charge of Cardiff City.

The Malaysian businessman, whose reign so far has included promotion, relegation, sackings, legal disputes and fan protests, said the process had been like working towards a PhD.

“Whatever it is, it’s challenging. I have to turn it around and I believe given time, I can turn it around,” he said. “I believe that in the long term, it will work out well. I always invest in business with a long-term view. Ten years is great, 15 years is better, 20 years is much better.

“I look upon Cardiff as my PhD in football management. With Cardiff, I learnt a lot. I think I can run and manage a football club very well.”

Tan, who took over in 2010, led Cardiff into the top-flight for the first time in 51 years in 2013. But that ended after one tumultuous season with the manager Malky Mackay sacked in December amid accusations of overspending. Tan said the matter was not closed.

“I happened to have a manager who I think overspent. I think he … overpaid a lot of players, paid the agents too much in agent fees. In fact, we are going to have some court cases against several agents. There’ll be some court case coming up over this.” Mackay rejects the accusations.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer failed to halt the slide back to the Championship and was sacked last month after they made a bad start to this season, with Russell Slade since appointed in his place.

Tan said he felt the worst of the fan protests against him were over, adding: “What else can the fans do? They just don’t support, it’s not going to change a lot. Logically they should support because I kept their club alive. I got the club promoted after 51 years.

“It is fun also, I enjoy watching matches. Whether Cardiff loses … it is not going to change my lifestyle. I did not borrow money to invest into Cardiff so it is all right.”

Tan expanded his portfolio by purchasing the Bosnian side FK Sarajevo in December, and the Malaysian said he was planning more investments.

“I am looking to buy a club in Europe,” he said, adding an announcement about US Major League Soccer was also imminent. “Investing in MLS, I think it’s long term. If we invest now, in 20 years it will be worth a lot.” – The Guardian

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