Soccer-Malaysian club deny Cardiff owner demanded logo change


Jan 6 (Reuters) - Malaysian second tier club Kedah have denied that their controversial logo change from green and yellow to red came as a caveat to a two million ringgit ($608,600) investment by Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan.

The logo switch is similar to what Malaysian businessman Tan employed at English Premier League Cardiff, who now play in red despite protests by supporters of the Welsh side who are known as the Bluebirds.

The Bernama news agency said on Sunday the logo change had angered fans of the three-times Malaysian champions, but the club's honorary secretary Aminuddin Omar rejected the suggestion they had their hand forced.

"We did not change the logo or colour according to our own taste or fancy but it was part of a transformation that KFA will be undergoing for the development of football in the state," Aminuddin was quoted as saying by Bernama.

The old logo was the brainchild of former manager Ahmad Basri Mohd Akil, who led the club to a number of honours.

Tan had not interfered in the running of the team since his investment on Aug. 15, the report quoted Aminuddin as saying, adding that the change of logo had been approved by the Sultan of Kedah.

Malaysia's ninth-richest person with a net worth of $1.3 billion and the former chairman of conglomerate Berjaya Group, Tan left school at 16 to start a career as a bank clerk, before purchasing Malaysia's first McDonald's franchise and then buying the country's main lottery agency.

Tan, routinely mocked by British media for his running of the Welsh club, incensed Cardiff fans last month by sacking popular manager Malky MacKay, who returned them to the top flight of English football this season for the first time since 1962.

Undeterred by accusations that he knows little about soccer, Tan added to his football portfolio last month by agreeing a deal to take over the control and management of Bosnian club Sarajevo..

($1 = 3.2865 ringgits) (Writing by Patrick Johnston; Editing by John O'Brien)

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