Monday, February 02, 2009

Let's all laugh at Gold Coast owner Clive Palmer

Remember these quotes which we reported on a few weeks ago?

"Who cares if the Turks want him? He has signed up with us. He's our player legally - end of story. He doesn't want to go to play in Turkey... I don't know anyone in their right mind who would want to go to play in Turkey."

The man who said them a couple of weeks ago was Gold Coast chairman Clive Palmer who was talking about a Kiwi player called Shane Smeltz who was rumoured to be in talks with Genclerbirligi.

Egg all over Palmer's face today with news that Smeltz has signed for Gencler's sister club Hacettepe.

Now the question is whether a warning from Gold Coast coach Miron Bleiberg will come to pass.

"They shouldn't upset Clive Palmer any further or he might decide to buy their club out," Bleiberg said.

UPDATE: This story just gets weirder because earlier today Smeltz won the the Australian league player of the year award. According to an AAP report he said he was very happy to have signed with Gold Coast. From the report:

Smeltz also said he was happy to be joining Gold Coast next season.

The Gold Coast is where Smeltz grew up and started his senior football career as a teenager.

"I'm 100 per cent pleased with the decision I've made, I'm confident we can have a great season in our first year," he said.

Update 2: Egg on our faces?
Now Smeltz is denying that he is coming to Hacettepe. This from Australia's Four Four Two magazine website. this morning exclusively revealed Wellington Phoenix had accepted a transfer deal that would take the Johnny Warren Medal-winning Kiwi to Turkish Superlig side Genclerbirligi OFTAS, now renamed Hacettepe SK.

Exclusively revealed by Four Four Two? The news was on this blog for hours before they ran it. I even made the change to Wikipedia which probably alerted them to the fact.

But this afternoon it was revealed the deal was put together by another agent without the knowledge of Shane's own agent or Gold Coast United.

"It is our intention for Shane to start his three year deal with the Gold Coast shortly," his agent Leo Karis told today.

"I'm always looking for profitable opportunities for my clients but I did not feel comfortable with this situation."

Turkish media were hailing the transfer as a done deal this afternoon, claiming Smeltz had signed off on a $400,000 three and a half year contract.

But Smeltz's management say there is no way it will proceed.

"Shane has a contract with Gold Coast United starting in April 2009 and he intends to join them at that time," added Karis. "That is the end of the matter.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous6:42 am

    The situation's not a vague as the media are making out. Hacettepe want Smeltz as soon as possible, but he's currently at a club (Wellington) with less than 6 months left on his contract, and has already signed an agreement with Gold Coast to move there once he's out of contract.

    Hacettepe have been negotiating with his current club (who would be happy to sell him before his contract runs out given that he'd leave anyway), but the truth is Wellington don't have much say in his future anymore. As Hacettepe have not yet formed any agreement with Gold Coast, they aren't inline to get the player.

    Palmer may be a trash-talking jerk, but he's confident for a reason: he's the one with a contract with the player's signature on it.