Wigan’s Ian Lenagan calls RFL’s dealings with Bradford Bulls a ‘festering sore’

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josie andrews
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Wigan’s Ian Lenagan calls RFL’s dealings with Bradford Bulls a ‘festering sore’

Post by josie andrews » Mon Dec 09, 2019 9:17 am

• Warriors’ owner calls for greater transparency
• Concern centres on RFL’s purchase of Odsal Stadium lease

Wigan’s owner Ian Lenagan says that in terms of the money that had gone in to Bradford ‘it would be important and good to get it cleared up.’

The Wigan Warriors owner, Ian Lenagan, has conceded that there is a need for transparency in the Rugby Football League’s historical dealings with Bradford Bulls amid growing calls for an independent inquiry into rugby league’s governing body. The sport’s professional clubs will meet later this month for their annual Council meeting and the RFL’s handling of Bradford is firmly on the agenda.

Several clubs at all levels of the professional game remain unhappy with the RFL’s past involvement with Bradford, which includes the governing body in 2012 paying a seven-figure sum to buy the lease of their home ground, Odsal Stadium – a venue which now sits empty after the Bulls decided to play their home games out of the city in 2020. In a recent meeting of lower-league clubs numerous representatives pushed for the governing body’s handling of the matter to be put on the agenda at the Council meeting.

No clubs have publicly revealed their stance before a likely vote into support for an inquiry by the clubs but Lenagan told the Guardian: “Do I think an inquiry is necessary? I’m not sure who would do it but I certainly think there is a need for transparency that is not there currently in terms of money that has gone into Bradford, the stadium and everything. It’s a bit of a festering sore I think, and it would be important and good to get it cleared up.”

The decision to purchase the Odsal lease was spearheaded by the former chief executive of the governing body, Nigel Wood, who is now part of the ownership model at Bradford after the man who re-started the club in 2017, Andrew Chalmers, sold his shares with the club again in significant debt. That has led many to decry a clear conflict of interest – something the RFL denies – and Lenagan admits he can see where those concerns come from.

“The complexity and situation surrounding the RFL acquiring the lease certainly is peculiar,” he said. “I understand the scepticism surrounding it. The whole issue of conflict of interest does make things difficult here but I have experienced those difficulties with the EFL in the past due to my involvement in other business. Nigel knows a lot about rugby and he was in a strong position at the RFL – though I’m not suggesting he was a party to anything that’s happened. Some of the things that have occurred there are unfortunate but it’s been a mess for seven or eight years now.”

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2019/ ... agan-wigan
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Re: Wigan’s Ian Lenagan calls RFL’s dealings with Bradford Bulls a ‘festering sore’

Post by fozzieskem » Mon Dec 09, 2019 1:12 pm

I’m sick and tired of this sports frankly weird obsession with Bradford time and again they’ve gone belly up but because it’s Bradford and their supposed army of fans the sport has to help them.

No it doesn’t the sport has a duty of care to plenty of other clubs not just one and it’s about time the sport cut them aside and let them get on with it,if it folds then it’s not meant to be 5 times now is it they’ve been bailed out,enough is enough.

I’m not going to rant about odsall other than to say it’s a shithole far worse than serial new ground dodgers cas and wakey crumbling grounds so why should they be given the pass?

I don’t care about happy memories,they’re the past,Bradford shot for the stars and found they couldn’t afford it,time and again it’s not good enough.

The RFL should never have bought the lease to the ground it was ridiculous,oh but they pay 70k a year rent,do they has the money ever been audited shown to all clubs?

Time to cut Bradford loose and if they find a backer that will stay with them for more than a few months then good,big Nige should also have nothing to do the either the club or world rugby,one or the other.

Rant over

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