Football 2 years ago

Rugby fires another salvo at Roar owners

  • Rugby fires another salvo at Roar owners

Queensland Rugby Union boss Jim Carmichael says the Indonesian owners of Brisbane Roar are solely to blame for the A-League club's descent into financial chaos.

In a fresh attack on club owners the Bakrie Group, Carmichael said the Roar had been financially neglected for years and accused chairman Chris Fong of failing to take responsibility for the club's extensive off-field problems.

The Roar has until August 19 to settle a $60,900 debt with the QRU over unpaid rent at Ballymore or the club will be wound up and liquidators engaged.

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"The QRU is growing tired of the Bakrie Group continually attempting to shift attention for their financial woes to present and past Roar management," Carmichael said in a statement.

"The Bakrie Group have claimed they've invested $15 million directly into the Queensland economy - they know that's just not true.

"There are major deficiencies in working capital prior to and during the Bakrie Group's ownership of the last three years.

"Roar management were left to deal with the operating cash-flow deficiencies, which have been obvious for a number of years."

Carmichael's comments come in response to Fong's claims in a News Corp report that the QRU's issues with the Bakrie Group are "misguided" and that former Roar managing director Sean Dobson was at fault for their financial troubles.

Dobson last week began work with the QRU as their new financial controller.

"The QRU is just one of many creditors owed money for a considerable period," Carmichael said.

"That's why I said two weeks ago that the FFA need to examine the ownership model of their A-League franchises and provide some level of comfort to organisations who have supported this soccer franchise over many years.

"I would suggest that the chairman of the Roar now refrain from making any further comment, including on his purported relationship with QRU, and that he concentrate his efforts on his own business."

The Roar is yet to file a single document in relation to the QRU's wind-up motion, much less appoint legal representation.

But there is a much more immediate concern - the next due date for wages to be delivered to players and staff on Saturday.

The Bakrie Group recently told Football Federation Australia it would not invest another cent into the Roar, meaning there is a real chance they won't be paid.

More creditors have also come to light, with the Roar also in debt to Stadiums Queensland for the use of cBus Super Stadium at Robina.

Brisbane played their three AFC Champions League home games at cBus Super Stadium under an arrangement that was at least partly underwritten by the Gold Coast City Council.

However, Stadiums Queensland confirmed it is yet to receive payment.

"Invoices have been submitted and we expect this to be taken care of in due course," a Stadiums Queensland spokesperson said.

Repeated attempts to contact Fong were unsuccessful.

But according to News Corp, Fong is in Paris attempting to rush through the sale of the club to a new consortium of Australian and overseas investors.

An earlier sale attempt, which put a staggering $18 million price tag on the Roar, has reportedly collapsed.

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