A report on Tuesday from Bloomberg claims Vincent Tan is looking to divest himself of all of his soccer team holdings, which include his ownership of Welsh side Cardiff City and his stake in MLS expansion team Los Angeles Football Club.
Tariq Panja and Eben Williams-Novy’s report cites unnamed sources that claim Tan wants to sell his stakes in Cardiff City, LAFC, as well as his ownership in Bosnian side FK Sarajevo and Belgian club FK Kortrijk.
Tan is a minority co-owner in LAFC, one of 27 at the moment. While he has never been involved in the day-to-day operations of the expansion team, set to take the field in 2018, and to my knowledge has never been present in Los Angeles for any public events for the club, his involvement early in the project, alongside Henry Nguyen and Ruben Gnanalingam, helped kickstart the entire thing, and Tan is listed as a “director and owner” on LAFC’s website, the only one with that title aside from Gnanalingam.
So if Tan is really looking to move on from soccer, what becomes of his LAFC stake? There’s a chance the other 26 owners could buy him out, or he could find a new investor to effectively take his slot. I would imagine that while he is not part of the group of six or so owners who have played a daily role at LAFC thus far, he still has played a somewhat significant role behind the scenes. The good news with so many owners is that there won’t be a collapse in the house of cards, but there may be a need for another owner to step into the breach behind the scenes, picking up whatever role Tan had with LAFC.
Of course, this is just a report so who knows how this turns out. Maybe Tan finds a willing investor to buy out his shares in all of his teams, maybe he sells some and not all, and maybe he changes his mind and stays the course. Stay tuned.
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