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Football Reporting


Ex-Real Salt Lake CEO Pace completes Burnley takeover

Former Real Salt Lake chairman Alan Pace has bought Premier League club Burnley, it was announced on Thursday.

Burnley confirmed that American investment group ALK Capital — headed by Pace — had purchased an 84% controlling stake in the club and that the deal had been ratified by the Premier League.

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Pace is expected to meet with Burnley boss Sean Dyche later on Thursday to discuss plans but said that he was ready to give the manager the funds to bring in additions to the squad, who are in 16th place in the league, five points above the relegation zone.

“We are very prepared to support Sean and the management team,” Pace said in a video released by the club.

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“We need time to get in and understand what their needs are, what we’re planning for and what the decisions were that they’ve taken so far and where they desire to go but we are fully prepared to back the manager.”

Pace spent 20 months as acting interim president at MLS side Real Salt Lake who lifted the 2009 MLS Cup during his time in charge.

Dyche has lamented that lack of support in recent transfer windows and was critical of the way some players were allowed to leave after their contracts ran out last season.

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The 49-year-old had a strained relationship with outgoing chairman Mike Garlick in recent months and has not been allowed to meet with the new ownership during the final stages of the takeover.

Pace said the consistency that Dyche has brought the club in his eight years in charge at Turf Moor, with the team in their fifth straight season in the Premier League, was one of the attractions of the club as an investment.

“The longevity and stability of the management side is something that has been very impactful from our perspective, along with the playing style and the ability to perform at the level they have. We’re very big fans of Sean,” he said.

Outgoing Burnley chairman and former majority shareholder Garlick will continue to serve on the board under the new ownership group and Pace, who plans to move with his family to Lancashire said the project was a long-term one.

“We wouldn’t do anything that’s not on a long-term basis, this is not a short, buy-to-flip, opportunity,” Pace added.

“This is very much something we have a passion for ourselves and we are looking forward to the opportunity to be involved for years to come. This is something we’re excited about.

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“I’m looking to take a very active role on a daily basis, myself, my family and some of my partners will be moving to the local area and we’re very excited to be engaged more regularly than some would expect.”

Burnley host Fulham next in the Premier League on Sunday. The Premier League also announced that Burnley will welcome second-placed Manchester United to Turf Moor in a rescheduled match on Jan. 12

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