Dutch football club Roda JC in trouble after Dubai jails team investor

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Football club Roda JC put the acquisition of the club by Aleksei Korotaev "on-hold" on Thursday after it was revealed that he's been in a Dubai prison since February. A number of stakeholders are worried about the Kerkrade club's future should this deal fall through. 

Korotaev was arrested on February 10th, NU.nl reports. His financial assets are frozen and he is still in custody awaiting a release on bail, according to a statement released by his investment company AK Investment. According to the company, Korotaev is accused of writing out a bad check. "Korotaev is the victim of an unintentional misunderstanding, or worse, of a fraudulent act to discredit him." the statement read.

"Only pre-agreements were signed with Mr. Korotaev", Roda JC wrote on its site. "In that he fulfilled all financial obligations. However, the transfer of shares has not yet taken place, which means that Frits Schrouff still owns 99.8 percent of the club's shares" The club continues that the proposed acquisition was "placed on hold for the time being, meaning that speculations about the budget for next season is for now meaningless." 

Swiss-Russian Korotaev's plans to acquire part of Schrouff's shares was announced in January. He spent one million euros on the transfer market, with which Roda JC acquired nine new players in that month. At his presentation in Kerkrade on February 3rd, Korotaev said he wanted to enter Roda JC into the Champions Leagua. He was arrested in Dubai a week later.

For quite a time Roda JC did not know what lay behind Korotaev's absence. According to the club, they have no further information on the matter. "The club hopes to get more clarity as soon as possible."

A number of stakeholders are very concerned about the future of Roda JC. "If the deal falls through, Roda JC has a very big problem", former board member Nol Hendriks said to the Telegraaf. "Then I wonder whether they'll get a license."

Former Roda JC coach Sef Vergoossen is also worried. "Roda JC has to work with four scenarios. Eredivisie with or without Korotaev and Jupiler League with or without Korotaev." He said according to Voetbalzone. Playing in the Ereivisie league with Korotaev would mean a budget of 20 million euros. Playing in the Jupiler League without him means a budget of 5 to 10 million, according to the former coach. "To say this positively: there is a very big challenge", Vergoossen said. "The uncertainty must not last too long, because a lot has to happen to the selection. Soon the market for good players will be much smaller."

 

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