Football 3 years ago

Roar A-League owners cop fan fury at forum

  • Roar A-League owners cop fan fury at forum

Angry Brisbane fans have vented their spleen at a fiery fan forum, with representatives of owners the Bakrie Group reaffirming their commitment to keeping hold of the A-League club.

Rahim Soekasah and Denis Djamaoeddin presented on behalf of the Bakries in front of more than 100 members on Wednesday night in Brisbane, confirming the Indonesian conglomerate intended to stay in control of the club for the long term and restore it to its former glory.

Supporters were told all outstanding debts would be settled by January and were assured of a bright future by Djamaoeddin, who said: "The new Brisbane Roar is coming".

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Soekasah and Djamaoeddin were part of a panel that also included A-League chief Damien de Bohun, interim Roar chief executive David Pourre and Fox Sports pundit Mark Bosnich, who listened on for more than two hours as the full force of supporter discontent in Brisbane was laid bare.

Bosnich said he was shocked by the depth of the anger shown.

Fed up with the club's recent financial turmoil, failure to pay players, staff and creditors on time, and the stinging loss of the Roar's best player Luke Brattan, supporters demanded an apology from the Bakries for the events of the past few months and wanted proof things were going to get better.

"We absolutely take on board what happened here is not OK. This is the first step in rebuilding trust," de Bohun said.

Soekasah and Djamaoeddin were the two Bakrie representatives who travelled to Sydney last month and convinced Football Federation Australia not to strip them of Brisbane's A-League licence, having presented a financial blueprint to bring the club back to full health.

Djamaoeddin also revealed the first that family head Nirwan Bakrie had heard that the Roar was to be sold several months ago was in a newspaper report.

That brings into question the role and legitimacy of former chairman Chris Fong, who claimed he had permission from the Bakries to sell the club and was reportedly close to offloading the Roar to a consortium of overseas and Australian investments.

Pourre declined to answer a question on whether the Roar had been trading while insolvent.

Whether the forum will quell supporter discontent remains to be seen. Many have vowed not to renew their memberships until the Bakries are removed.

"I've heard nothing tonight that makes me want to put my money back into the club," one supporter said towards the end of the evening.

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