Football duos worse than Murray and Foster

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In a surprising announcement earlier this week, veteran SBS football personalities Les Murray and Craig Foster fronted a Chinese-backed “Southern Expansion” bid for an A-League team based in Sydney’s south.

With that in mind we look at some of the other great (well not really) duos behind the scenes in world football (aka. England).

1. Tom Hicks and George Gillett – Liverpool 

Few Liverpool fans will remember their former American overlords (and owners) with much fondness after their tumultuous three year reign between 2007-2010.

Aside from saddling the club with considerably more debt, engaging in a public wooing of Jurgen Klinsmann in order to replace Rafa Benitez (who had just won the Champions League in 2005), and failing to deliver a much promised new stadium, the most memorable moment for the pair came in 2010. In reply to a letter from a fan expressing his concern over Liverpool’s financial state, then board member Tom Hicks Jnr (son of the owner) returned an email with the famous words: “Blow me, f*** face. Go to hell. I’m sick of you.”

2. Owen an Karl Oyston – Blackpool

The father and son duo are best known for their positions at Blackpool as owner and chairman. The Oyston family, which has had a connection with the Tangerines since the late 1980’s, has overseen a remarkable period in Blackpool’s history with the club rising from the 4th tier (League Two) to the Premier League in just nine years.

Unfortunately they’ve fallen even harder after being relegated from the Premier League in 2011 – with the team now plying their trade back in League Two. With eight managerial changes in five years and a series of financial cuts by the owners, Blackpool was left with just eight registered players at one point in the 2014 pre-season. Add to it a number of protests and walkouts and it’s safe to say the relationship between the Oyston family and Blackpool fans remains strained.

3. David Gold and David Sullivan – Birmingham City and West Ham

Affectionately known as the ‘Dildo Daves’, the current West Ham and former Birmingham City owners made their respective fortunes (in the billions) as pioneers of the British porn industry.

While the duo have managed to keep a relatively balanced relationship with the West Ham faithful during their seven year reign, it’s their legacy at Birmingham that has created a tense relationship with the Blues faithful. Gold and Sullivan sold Birmingham City in 2009 for £81 million after 16 years with the club, but their choice in buyer, Carson Yeung, didn’t turn out so well when the Hong Kong businessman was jailed for money laundering. On the brink of bankruptcy in 2014 the club was ultimately saved by new investors, however the fans maintain their grudge against the former porn moguls for giving them the shaft.

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