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Concerns grow over Roar owners

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 23/05/2016 Vince Rugari

The immediate future of Brisbane Roar is set to become a little clearer this week with a representative of the A-League club's ownership to return from Indonesia and address staff.

But concerns are growing over the club's lack of urgency and direction under the Bakrie Group, who are yet to provide a solid commitment that they will continue to fund the Roar and build on the success of last season.

Demis Djamaoeddin - one of the two Bakrie representatives who have been stationed in Brisbane since the club's huge financial problems came to light last year - is due to arrive back from Jakarta, where he was to meet club owner Nirwan Bakrie, in the coming days.

Football Federation Australia is hopeful Djamaoeddin will bring with him a determination from the Bakries to keep backing the Roar financially, and a plan to install a new chief executive as soon as possible.

David Pourre quit as CEO earlier this month, leaving Brisbane with no off-field leadership.

Pourre essentially held the Roar together as they went from the brink of liquidation last year to within one game of an A-League grand final this year, while he has also been a key advisor to club chairman Rahim Soekasah in his dealings with FFA and the other A-League clubs.

"The Bakrie Group has stabilised the Brisbane Roar financial position over the past year and that new investment has provided the solid foundation for the success this season," said an FFA spokesperson.

"It's not unusual for there to be a review of strategy and business operations after a busy season, but the recruitment of a new CEO must be placed high on the agenda.

"FFA is awaiting advice from the Bakrie Group in relation to the timing and process.

"FFA will continue to communicate with the Bakrie representatives over the next few days."

The Roar are financially stable - probably more so now than at any time under the Bakrie Group's ownership of the club. Players and staff are not owed money.

But it's understood many at the club, and indeed FFA, are baffled as to why the Bakries would spend around $4 million to recapitalise the club over the last 12 months, and approximately $20 million in total since taking over in 2011 - only to regularly go close to missing payment deadlines.

The Roar's A-League licence is conservatively valued at $10 million, but it's unclear as to whether the Bakries intend to keep the club or perhaps sell it to another interested party.

Brisbane has qualified for an AFC Champions League play-off in February 2017 but financial certainty is needed before coach John Aloisi and football director Craig Moore can begin firm planning and recruitment work for next season.

Pourre has been retained as part of a new advisory board for the Roar, but that too remains up in the air without word from the Bakries.

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