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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Briatore and Bhatia Dine in Paris...Bhatia Speaks...

"They'll always have Paris!"

Telegraph - Sandy Macaskill - Queens Park Rangers chairman Flavio Briatore in show of solidarity with Amit Bhatia
Queens Park Rangers chairman and vice-chairman have dined together in Paris in the hope of proving the board are united.
It follows speculation that relations among board members may have been fractured by differing policy over ticket prices.
Reports of boardroom unrest began to circulate on Thursday after an announcement on the club's website from Bhatia, the son-in-law of Lakshmi Mittal, 20 per cent stakeholder in the London club and Britain's richest man, which revealed that a plan to increase match-day ticket prices is being frozen in light of the current financial upheaval.
Bhatia's open letter was welcomed by fans, who had opposed the proposal of charging spectators increasing amounts depending on the attractiveness of their opposition. Indeed, the scheme of classifying matches as category A, B and C games was also contended by the Football League, who ruled that price changes mid-season were prohibited.
Even so, the announcement that forthwith all matches would be priced under the category C bracket for the rest of the season was seen as undermining Briatore, who had planned the hikes to meet budgets previously set to provide a better standard of entertainment for home and away fans. The Italian was understood to be furious when he learnt of the announcement.
Yet Bhatia insisted: "This is the result of Flavio and myself spending time discussing the best way to deal with the [financial crisis]. Any decision that has been made has been made by myself and the rest of the board combined.
"We are friends and family on the board where everyone is aligned in their thinking. The board was listening to the fans and understood that the price increase was unwarranted at this point in time." Telegraph

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