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Wednesday, 23 October, 2002, 09:03 GMT 10:03 UK
Will Lineker save Leicester?
Gary Lineker
Former England striker Gary Lineker unveils a rescue bid to save Leicester City.

Will the consortium save the club?


The former England striker has invested a six-figure sum into Leicester City, and asked the fans to do all they could to support the cash-strapped club.

The Foxes successfully applied to go into administration on Monday after creditors refused to accept a rescue package, but the Lineker-led consortium has thrown them a much-needed lifeline.

Are things looking up at Filbert Street?


This debate is now closed. A selection of your e-mails appear below.

Whilst I can only praise Heskey for donating 100,000 to the Leicester consortium, surely there are FA rules which would prevent a player of one club becoming an investor in another. Imagine the potential conflict of interest.
Paul Taylor, UK


Leicester need to set a precedent by renegotiating contracts with players
Simon Edbury, UK

After all the good players that have passed through the Foxes' ranks it is hard to accept that sustained success and financial stability have been so hard to find!

As an ex-patriot Leicester lad I still watch their results and wonder why they can't achieve sustained success like the rugby team?
alan bromley, France

Whilst I'm sure Gary's heart is in the right place the whole scenario is not from the real world. Football likes to think it is big business until the going gets tough.

In this case Leicester are reliant on handouts from customers (the fans) and ex-employees (Lineker, Heskey etc) to stop them going to the wall. Can you imagine that happening in any other industry?

Leicester need to set a precedent by renegotiating contracts with players. Don't forget that whilst a significant pay cut may not be very appealing to the players, it will be an awful lot better than losing their jobs if the club is liquidated.

Simple forces of demand and supply have finally come to bear and no big hearted gestures from Gary or anyone else will ultimately stem the tide.
Simon Edbury, UK

Always the gentleman. I did not expect anything less from a great sportsman and great football ambassador. Good luck!
Dee, Zambia


Wage deferment is all well and good, but it's the non-footballing staff at the club who are baring the brunt
Paul R, England

As a Liverpool fan, I'm very proud of Emile Heskey. His gesture towards his old club is generous and timely, and it gives the lie to the sentiment that all professional footballers are mercenary money-grabbers.
Ed Harris, UK

I am Leicester born and bred and I have been proud to watch Gary in his footballing career (and also his television career), and to always know that he is a "Leicester lad". This endeavour to save the club just strengthens that pride. The same for Emile as well!
Stewart, England

It's a generous gesture by Lineker, but Leicester, like most Nationwide clubs, will continue to struggle unless the players take more responsibility.

Wage deferment is all well and good, but it's the non-footballing staff at the club who are baring the brunt, following the substantial redundancies.

The lower leagues of English football will continue to decline until player greed or boardroom weakness is curbed.
Paul R, England

As loyal Leicester City fan, all I can say is a massive thank you to Gary. I know that he won't solve the problem by himself, but it's a step in the right direction. Let's hope everyone connected with Leicester get behind him 110%.
AR, UK


My reservations lay in some of the other 'consortium members'
Charlie Collins, UK

Good luck to Gary. Football clubs need people in charge that really care about them. I wish my club, Aston Villa, has such a thing.
Rob, England

Whether he can save them or not remains to be seen. I think he has gone about it in the right way in terms of his statement to the media. This isn't Gary Lineker taking over the club; it is him and a group of others. I wish them the best of luck.
Rob Morris, UK

When I was little, every boy wanted to be Gary Lineker. And this show of club loyalty is just his latest example of being a true ambassador for the game. It's a shame this generation of kids don't have role models of the same calibre.
Matt, UK

Lineker is a legend!!! My reservations lay in some of the other 'consortium members'. Martin George for example has been on the board for years, these people (with help from John Elmson and Peter Taylor) are the reason why a previously well run club is on the brink of extinction.

Paying average premiership players 25,000 plus a week (i.e. Denis Wise), buying Ade Akinbyi for 5 million, failing to recognise that a new stadium plus relegation = disaster! These people should walk away now and let Gary and some new blood run our wonderful football club. I'll give 50, to Leicester!!
Charlie Collins, UK


Even if his financial contribution is not massive, he does not expect any financial return
Richard Sanderson, United Kingdom

Things can only get better at Leicester, and if the plight of the club offers any warnings or lessons to other clubs before they get into trouble then even better. I'm sure many Leicestershire people will rally round, as Lineker hopes. But don't forget, many fans have already made substantial contributions by way of buying shares that now no longer exist.
Nick Tester, UK

It's great to see the loyalty that Gary has shown with the investment - how many modern players would do the same thing? Gary has always been a role model! Good Luck Gary and Good luck Leicester! Hope to see you soon in the Premiership!
Ben Ramsay, UK

The man is a legend - he is respected and popular. With this in mind, I believe he is the ideal man to take the lead in a consortium to take over Leicester City.

Even if his financial contribution is not massive, he does not expect any financial return. His presence in this matter will inspire the club and the town to better things.
Richard Sanderson, United Kingdom

Good for Gary Lineker for helping out his home town team. It would be nice to see such loyalty being displayed by some current stars. However, Gary Lineker's six figure sum is only a small drop in the ocean that will be needed to keep a football club alive.

Without massive cost cutting exercises and reductions in players' wages the club will struggle to get itself back on an even keel.
Mike Steel, England


Why should the people of Leicester have to dig deeper to try and rectify a problem caused by bad management and total greed?
Murray Lee Smith, UK

Well done Gary. I am not a supporter of Leicester, but did live there for three years. During that time I saw that the passion of the supporters was fantastic. Leicester City do not deserve to die - football needs more people like Mr Lineker.
Brian Hunt, England

I live very close to Leicester city centre, and although I follow the Tigers passionately, I always check City's results and want them to do well. However, I see their problems as symptomatic of those affecting nearly all clubs.

Why then, should the people of Leicester have to dig deeper to try and rectify a problem which has been caused by bad management and total greed? For too long now, too many have been riding the gravy train. Why should the supporters now have to find money to avoid it derailing?
Murray Lee Smith, UK

John Wilson (below) is right. Even if we do start sharing grounds with Shepshed Dynamo, I'll still be on the train from London to see them every Saturday. It's people like Lineker who capture the spirit of what it is to be a Foxes fan. If he is willing to stand up and fight so should we. He has my full support.
Vicky, London, UK

Nobody wishes to see the demise of Leicester City FC, but the demise of the ITV funding company might just do football a favour and bring the game to its senses.

The game can no longer continue to satisfy the demands of greedy, overpaid players, ridiculous transfer fees and the construction of stadia - all of which result in the punter being fleeced and clubs going to the wall.
John Barrymore, England


Leicester fans must feel that things are looking up though now, both on the pitch and off it
Nick, England

Now that the legend has shown his backing of the club, let's see the whole city - and supporters from everywhere - get behind the club and shout them back into the Premiership.
Steve Turner, UK

As a Norwich fan I know the financial turmoil that relegation from the Premiership can bring. However, we're now on something of an even keel (albeit a bit precariously) and I'm sure that Leicester can do it too. Good on Gary Lineker for having a big heart and a big wallet too!
Jon, England

Well, now the club doesn't have to pay its players peanuts. They can pay them Crisps instead.
Darren, UK

Relegation for Leicester and my club (Derby) was a much needed wake-up call. The current restructuring at both clubs is painful, but it is for the long-term good.

Leicester fans must feel that things are looking up though now, both on the pitch and off it. In Lineker, Leicester have a man who is motivated to get involved with the club for all the right reasons.
Nick, England

Lest we forget the real reason we're in this mess - Peter Taylor spending 23m on predominantly sub-standard players. And John Elsom, who is clearly a lovely bloke, nevertheless let him promise several of them 30,000-a-week - madness!
Dickie, England

It is reassuring to see an old Leicester player and a major figure in the media stepping forward with his hand in pocket to save the club. With our current league position, new stadium and years of footballing history it would be a tragic to see the club go to the wall.
Jason Davies, UK


I'm not that optimistic at the moment
Naresh Madhvani, England

I'm sure that LCFC will survive. The sad thing is that this will not be the first "big" club to go into administration. We are just fortunate to have a high profile person like Gary Lineker to help us out the mire. Some clubs/towns will not be so lucky.
Julian Sahu, Leicester, UK

As an exiled Leicester City fan I am delighted with the news. Gary Lineker will always be a legend at Leicester, and now he will be held in even higher regard by the fans. Hopefully, the takeover will produce funds to help Micky Adams strengthen the squad.

He has done really well for us so far and the new board, if possible, should show their faith in him by giving him resources to ensure The Foxes return to the Premiership at the end of this season.
David Blackadder, Scotland

I think the intention is there but I believe they are still looking for another 3m, and I do not see where that is going to come from. I'm not that optimistic at the moment, and will wait to see what happens at the Supporters Trust meeting on Wednesday.
Naresh Madhvani, England

Although it's great for Gary, it sickens me to see that Leicester have sacked 25 staff in order to save costs. What about the inflated salaries of the players?
Graham, UK

My concern is that Lineker's message seems to be directed totally at a local audience - the 'people of Leicestershire' - which may put off potential donors from outside the county.
Shaun Knapp, England

I'm not a Leicester fan but it's great to see a former player do something for the club that set him on his way. Lineker is a true gent and I wish him and Leicester all the best.
Philip Savage, England

Has anyone seen Lineker's business plan for Leicester? No? Well, how can you comment on his suitability or otherwise?
Dougal McKinnon, UK


Gary deserves huge respect, but let's not forget the players either for doing their bit
Chris, Germany/England

A sad week for Leicester looks like ending on a bright note. Thanks for all your efforts Gary - City fans will forever be indebted to him if he is able to bring together a consortium. No tears will be shed at Leicester at the end of the plc.
Andy, UK

I hope so. Football below the Premiership is going through a torrid time at the moment (I should know, I'm a Wimbledon fan!) and anyone working to redress the balance should be supported.

The good thing about this proposal is it's a football fan at the heart of it, not an unscrupulous, greedy businessman, as has been the case with the Dons and various other clubs.
Marcus, England

I think it is brilliant that Gary Lineker is saving this club. I would like to see some of the big (and greedy clubs) like Man Utd and Arsenal redistributing some of their wealth so that the essence of English football stays alive.
Kevin Isaac, England

As a Leicester fan living in Germany for a year, I was getting worried that I wouldn't get to see Leicester in the brilliant new stadium. Now thanks to Gary I will, and it'll be back where we belong, in the Premiership!

Gary deserves huge respect, but let's not forget the players either for doing their bit. Good to see everyone pulling together!
Chris, Germany/England


Lineker is a legend
Guy, England

It's about time Leicester City had backers who had loyalty for the club. That's why Gary Lineker is good for the club. He's Leicester through and through.
Foxey, Leicester, England

Lineker is a legend.
Guy, England

I've been going to Filbert Street (and now to the Walkers Stadium) for the last 48 years and I'm telling you here and now that this club will not lie down and die. I hope and believe that Gary Lineker and his associates will pull things round but, if not, there will be a Leicester City Football Club in some guise or other, even if we kick off next season in the Doc Martens League (Western Division), camping out at Shepshed Dynamo or somewhere.

The support this season has been incredible, especially considering all the off-field grief and last season's playing performance. With regard to the latter, any bunch of supporters can stand up and cheer when the team's doing well but when they all link arms and sing "I'm Leicester til I die" whilst the team is being relegated in front of their eyes you're always in with a shout.
John Wilson, UK

I am not a Leicester fan (Arsenal), but good luck to them in their current financial plight. It is great to see a former star such as Gary Lineker not forgetting their roots and doing what they can.

I hope the people of Leicester and local business leaders get behind the rescue consortium.
Steve, England


Lineker strikes at the heart of what football used to be about
John, England

Leicester gave Gary his chance to succeed as a footballer, it's good to see Gary giving Leicester the chance to survive!
Martin Forbes, Edinburgh, Scotland

Good on him. Giving something back to the club that started him off. I hope he succeeds.
Munch, Wales

Leicester are exactly the kind of side the Premiership needs. As with most things in their history, grit and determination will win through. Lineker strikes at the heart of what football used to be about, and with luck they will continue in football's top flight.
John, England

Gary was a true pro on the pitch and is a true gentleman off it! This is the way to get behind the club you are passionate about - by supporting them rather than knocking them.
Richard Burlingham, England

Fantastic news for a lifelong supporter of the Foxes such as myself. I remember as a kid when the young Gary worked on Leicester market, and it is terrific to see such loyalty to his old club. Now all we need to do is secure promotion...
PJ, UK

As a lifelong Leicester fan, I'd say the glass is definitely looking half-full at this point. Good for Gary, not forgetting his roots!
Tom Adams, UK


It is about time that club loyalty overrides business interests
Lee, England

I believe that the people of Leicester will back any moves to bring the club out of administration - even if it means people standing on the streets of Leicester with collecting tins.

We're having a fantastic season on the pitch so far. The attendance figures are, on average, 10,000 more than they were when we were a Premiership team, and I see no reason why the club can't pull itself out of its current position.
Phil, France

Gary Lineker was, and still is a hero in Leicester. In saving LCFC from going under, it confirms the fact that he is a true Leicester supporter and is still the city's favourite son!
Steve, Rotterdam, Netherlands

In a time when footballing loyalties are often sacrificed for big bucks, it is nice to see big bucks being spent on a footballing loyalty! All the best Gary, I hope it all works out for you.
Stuart, UK

I'm not a fan, but good on him. It is about time that club loyalty overrides business interests. Are we going to see a shift? I doubt it, but good on him.
Lee, England

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23 Oct 02 | Leicester City
23 Oct 02 | Leicester City
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