Auckland’s new A-League team has a kick-off date, an internet site and a chief government officer, however there’s nonetheless no phrase on a reputation, colors or house floor.
- US billionaire Bill Foley owns Premier League team Bournemouth and NHL champions Las Vegas
- Foley stated he desires to take a team from enlargement to championship as he did with the Golden Knights in Vegas
- The New Zealand Knights had been primarily based in Auckland within the A-League from 2004 to 2007
The new billionaire-bankrolled team will enter the A-League Men competitors subsequent October, and start life within the A-League Women a 12 months later, for the 2025-26 competitors.
Senior soccer executives from Australia, together with A-Leagues commissioner Nick Garcia, and New Zealand gathered in Auckland on Tuesday to formally hand a licence to American membership proprietor Bill Foley.
Foley is a 78-year-old insurance coverage and monetary providers tycoon who has branched out into the sporting world in recent times.
In 2016, he based NHL franchise Vegas Golden Knights, and in 2022 he led an investor group to purchase English Premier League facet Bournemouth.
Foley will hope to match or higher the Golden Knights’ path to success, after they reached the Stanley Cup finals of their inaugural season and gained the championship this 12 months, their sixth season.
“Building a championship team from expansion has been my most exhilarating professional achievement, and I aim to do the same for the fans of New Zealand and particularly the community on the North Island,” he stated.
“It’s an honour to bring a top football club to Auckland … it’s a special place and an area that I know will embrace this team.”
Foley is but to present the team a reputation however stated the Black Knights was his most popular nickname throughout a New Zealand radio interview final month.
He owns a holding firm referred to as Black Knight Football Club.
If confirmed, the title would reference each Foley’s most popular “Knights” nomenclature and the membership’s forerunner within the A-Leagues: the Auckland-based New Zealand Knights, which folded after two seasons.
The new team can also be missing different elements of membership DNA — colors, a crest, a equipment, a coaching facility and match venue — although as of Tuesday, it does have an internet site: AKLFootball24.com.
It additionally has its first worker: chief government Nick Becker, who beforehand labored in occasions and advertising roles with Manchester City and Melbourne City soccer golf equipment.
A-Leagues chair Stephen Conroy stated Foley had been chosen as the popular proprietor on account of his monitor document.
“In Bill Foley we have a proven global sports investor and operator with a track record of building deep roots in the community, a passion for football, and a longstanding business and personal relationship with New Zealand,” he stated.
“We are delighted to welcome Bill and his team to the A-Leagues and look forward to seeing the club in action next year.”
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