Businessman Sumrith Thanakarnjanasuth has taken over as chairman of struggling Oxford United in English football’s third-tier League One, the club has announced.
Sumrith, who last year also bought a 25 per cent share in nearby second-tier side Reading, replaced Darryl Eales as the new owner of Oxford, who are currently 15th in the table and five points clear of the relegation zone.
“First of all I want to say how exciting it is to become part of Oxford United. I have been to games recently and seen the passion of the fans and the ambitious way that the whole club is set up, not just the first team but also the Academy, the Community programme and the back office structure,” said Sumrith, also known as “Tiger”.
“Darryl has such enthusiasm for the club and that really made it an easy decision to join forces and try to keep the U's moving in the right direction.
“I am only sorry that I am unavoidably out of the country for this announcement, but I am looking forward to coming to the Northampton game on Saturday and to saying hello to the fans properly at a later date. I would just like to say to the fans now that my ambitions match, and may even exceed, theirs,” he added.
It is a tumultuous time at Oxford, who have recently been in talks with former Wales and Liverpool forward Craig Bellamy about becoming their new manager.
Bellamy, 38, currently works for Cardiff City as their player development manager, having lost out to former teammate Ryan Giggs in the race to become manager of the Welsh national side.
Oxford, who are without a manager after sacking Pep Clotet last month, would be Bellamy's first senior managerial role.