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Last Updated: Monday, 15 May 2006, 22:30 GMT 23:30 UK
More pressure on Lowe at Saints
Rupert Lowe
Southampton chairman Rupert Lowe has maintained he will not step down
Rupert Lowe's future as chairman of Southampton is in doubt after the club's largest shareholder called an extraordinary general meeting.

Property tycoon Michael Wilde, who owns 13% of the club shares, has proposed the removal of the club's board.

Lowe has long been under pressure at St Mary's, with Wilde and new investor Leon Crouch urging him to step down.

The meeting, which must convene within 21 days, will propose businessman Ken Dulieu as the new chairman.

Other men being put forward for the new board include Southampton-based construction tycoon Patrick Trant.

And Jim Hone will be proposed as chief executive - a position he previously held at Fulham Football Club.

Hone said he hoped Lowe would leave of his own accord.

"We are very hopeful still that Rupert will take a look at his situation and decide in the best interests of the club, it would be wise for him to move on," he told BBC Radio Five Live's Sportsweek.

"Whether that's the outcome or not remains to be seen, but an EGM does the club no good at all.

"The disunity and uncertainty that surrounds all of that over maybe six weeks or so makes it difficult for George Burley and the guys to plan for next season."

Lowe has previously maintained that he has no intention of stepping down, claiming he has "the support of the majority of the board".

However, Wilde insists his move is not with a view to a takeover bid, and has distanced himself from links to the Andrew Strode-Gibbons consortium hoping to buy the club.



SEE ALSO
Consortium plans Saints takeover
27 Jan 06 |  Southampton
Lowe will not step down at Saints
01 May 06 |  Southampton
New investor blames Saints chief
05 Apr 06 |  Southampton
Wilde increases stake in Saints
03 Mar 06 |  Southampton
Saints buyer denies takeover bid
24 Feb 06 |  Southampton


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