AirAsia boss in QPR takeover talks

August 15, 2011

Malaysian entrepreneur Tony Fernandes added fuel to speculation he wants to buy into Premier League club Queens Park Rangers by attending their opening match of the season at the weekend.

I am in discussions,” Fernandes told Sky Sports News. “I think over the next two to three days, one way or another, they’ll be some sort of announcement. That’s for sure.”

Fernandes, who owns the Team Lotus Formula One outfit, has been strongly linked by British media with a move to take control of the London-based soccer club by buying out majority shareholder Bernie Ecclestone, the F1 supremo. Ecclestone and former Renault Formula One team boss Flavio Briatore own around 70 percent of the club with Indian steel billionaire Lakshmi Mittal the other major shareholder.

“I think we’ll have to wait and see,” the club’s manager Neil Warnock told Sky television when asked about Fernandes.

“I know he is very interested. Stability is what we need really.”

Television pictures showed Fernandes sitting in the directors’ box with Briatore at Saturday’s game.

QPR are not the first London soccer club to be associated with Fernandes with the owner of Malaysia-based budget airline AirAsia saying in the past he had wanted to buy into West Ham United, who were relegated from the top flight last season.