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Friday 23 February 2018

Wielding the axe latest act of drama from Malaysian owner who craves adulation

Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan with Chief Executive of the Premier League Richard Scudamore
Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan with Chief Executive of the Premier League Richard Scudamore

London Daily Telegraph

Vincent Tan's three years with Cardiff City have been dotted with dramas, from shirt-colour changes to excruciating birthday-party videos and persistent rumours of interference over selection, WRITES JOHN PERCY.

Since taking a controlling share of the Welsh club in 2010, Tan's proposals have become increasingly ambitious. Regularly referred to as a "Malaysian billionaire", Tan's fortune according to Forbes is actually a little short of that, at around £800m.

That he craves adoration is clear from the 60th birthday video made for him by his employees last year. In the video, large groups of dancing staff declare they "love" him, and that "where Tan Sri goes we follow".

As for why Tan has turned on Mackay, some have wondered whether he might resent the manager's enormous popularity with fans, when Tan might have thought that as the man who paid for Cardiff's promotion, he would receive more adulation.

Tan said earlier this year: "If the fans and everybody welcome me I can stay for a long time. But if I find they are rude maybe I will find a new buyer and go off."

His popularity in Cardiff first took a dive last year when he changed the club's colours from blue to red, and then revealed their name could be changed to Cardiff Dragons.

When promotion was secured in April, there was a nagging feeling among fans that the fun and games really were about to start.

In fairness to Tan, he gave Mackay more than £25m for signings, including a club-record £11m on Gary Medel, the Chilean holding midfielder, but there was never any prospect of equilibrium between owner and manager.

Respected head of recruitment Iain Moody was dismissed in October, while there were also reports that Tan had signed a player, Etien Velikonja, without Mackay's consent. Mackay is likely to follow Moody soon, apparently for the crime of asking for reinforcements in January. Such a ruthless move is unlikely to improve Tan's chance of earning the adulation he craves. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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