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Parma to be sold to Russian-Cypriot conglomerate

December 7, 2014

PARMA, Italy (AP) — Parma President Tommaso Ghirardi has agreed a deal to sell the club to a Russian-Cypriot conglomerate.

The deal is worth a reported 7 million euros ($8.6 million) and will likely be made official during the week.

“We were informed this morning directly by the president that the talks had intensified,” Parma managing director Pietro Leonardi said on Sunday. “President Ghirardi has been dealing with this deal personally, he’s been working on it for a while and told us that things have speeded up in the past few hours.

“We have only been told there is an agreement, which then has to be formalized between the parties involved.”

Parma will be docked points this season for failing to meet a deadline to pay outstanding wages and taxes, after an unexpected delay to the sale of the club which was supposed to be completed by Nov. 10.

Parma, which is bottom of Serie A, lost 2-1 to Lazio on Sunday for its 12th defeat in 14 matches.

Parma would become the third club in Italy’s top tier to be under foreign ownership.

In 2011, a group of four Boston executives closed a deal with Roma to become the first foreign majority owners of a Serie A club, with Boston Celtics minority owner James Pallotta becoming club president the following year.

Roma then became the first Italian football team to be entirely foreign-owned after Italian bank UniCredit sold its stake to the American group of investors last August.

Indonesian entrepreneur Erick Thohir and two associates took charge at Inter Milan last year, although former president Massimo Moratti’s company still has a 29.5-percent stake in the club.

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