Serie A club Parma sold for €1 twice in as many months
The ownership of Parma football club has changed hands for the sum of one euro for the second time since December, as the club faces acute financial crisis. The cash-strapped Serie A club announced on their official website that Italian businessman Giampietro Manenti has taken control of the club for the nominal sum.
The previous owners, a Russian-Cypriot conglomerate, had bought the club from major shareholder Tommaso Ghirardi just two months back.
Parma is going through a financial meltdown which has seen the club sell off a number of players in the winter transfer window and terminating the contracts of Antonio Cassano and Felipe; on the request of the players.
The remaining players and staff at the Stadio Ennio Tardini, who have not been paid any wages since July, have issued an ultimatum to the club to pay up the outstanding wages by February 15.
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The previous president Ermir Kodra, who was in term for only two weeks, has stepped down and Manenti will be taking over the club's presidency during this time of turmoil.
Manenti, who has taken over the club’s debts with the take-over, insisted that accommodation of the club’s employees will be his top priority.
"We're going to pay everything. It's been a turbulent time for the players, but I've come away satisfied with my meeting [with them]. They were not asking for their wages, they were asking for the situation to be saved.
"It will be our duty to respect the deadlines, both of taxes and salaries. We are going to try to get other Italian and foreign companies on board.
"We're really motivated to get going and we're close to a very important deadline for the club. Parma have a great appeal. I had contacted Ghirardi in previous months, but negotiations didn't reach a conclusion."
The club is at the bottom of the Serie A with nine points from 21 games and has been already docked one point with the imminent possibility of two more if wages are not cleared on time. Despite finishing sixth in the Serie A last season, the club was refused a Europa League place due to overdue taxes and missed payment deadlines.