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Sheffield Utd formalise Mariners investment

Sheffield United owner Kevin McCabe has formalised his investment with A-League club Central Coast Mariners. McCabe has joined forces with current stakeholders Peter Turnbull and Lyall Gorman to form the Mariners Trust, which owns more than 60 per cent of the club.

In the short-term, the trust will inject $1m into operational costs, but it is the long-term strategy - expected to involve $40m of investment during the next five years - which will take the club to a new level, says the Sydney Morning Herald.

"What they've achieved in just four years is fantastic," McCabe said. "This was something that was never planned. I spend a lot of time in Australia on business. I got to meet both Lyall and Peter about 15 months ago and their ideals and mine are pretty much the same.

"I've been with Sheffield United since 1995 and it's all been about creating business models which can provide revenue opportunities off the field.

"Peter and Lyall see things the same way and that's why we've got together. It's about building a proper infrastructure, from the six-year-olds upwards.

"Football is a risk game. How often does the best team lose?

"Probably more than in any other sport. What you want is to build a club which is going to be successful over the long term."

Sheffield United enjoy an extensive club network, which includes Sao Paulo, Chengdu Blades and Ferencvaros.

McCabe says a Blades player is likely to be on his way to the Mariners: "Probably the best way for fans to be convinced an affiliation is working is with a player swap. Fingers crossed, there will be an announcement soon."

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