Damien de Bohun, the head of the A-League, believes it is imperative the Newcastle Jets engage with their local community when a new owner for the club is found.
The A-League licence previously held by former Jets owner Nathan Tinkler was revoked last month – with Football Federation Australia (FFA) taking control of the club on a short-term basis.
Speaking in Newcastle following a forum with local business leaders, De Bohun expressed optimism over the future of the Jets and stressed FFA’s commitment to finding the right owner.
“What emerged very clearly as a key theme was that we have to make sure the 60,000 participants in this region become active fans of the Newcastle Jets,” said De Bohun.
“We need to work together to make that happen and we’ve said from the outset, we’re here to listen.
“Yes, we’ve a clear vision of what the club will look like but we’re here to listen and listen very carefully to what the people of Newcastle want to see from their football club.
“What’s emerged absolutely clearly is that this club will succeed in the long term based on the extent to which it truly engages with the local community.”
De Bohun added: “The fact we’ve had so much interest [from potential owners] is a great sign.
“It’s fair to say we’re looking at groups of people who’ll come together… who will actively engage and involve the community.”
Thirteen players – Nigel Boogaard, Lee Ki-je, Enver Alivodic, Ben Kennedy, Ben Kantarovski, David Carney, Mitch Cooper, Daniel Mullen, Andy Brennan, Josh Barresi, Radovan Pavicevic and Themba Muata-Marlow – have re-commited to the Jets this week.
Meanwhile, James Pascoe was unveiled as the club’s football manager in an acting capacity.
“It’s a statement from us there are people in the club who understand the landscape,” De Bohun said of Pascoe.
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