Born in the south east of Ireland, Simon put his life-long love of football to good use when he started a successful independent blog in 2010. That opened up an alternative route to a career in journalism, and having had work published across a number of sites and publications, Simon joined the staff at Spotlight Sports Group in 2018.
Serie A club Inter Milan have announced the appointment of 26-year old Steven Zhang as the club’s new president.
In a video posted through the club’s official social media channels, Inter disclosed that Zhang was to replace Indonesian entrepreneur Erick Thohir, who had held the position at the club since 2013, with immediate effect.
Zhang is the son of Zhang Jindong, current chairman of Suning Holdings Group, a Chinese firm that holds a majority stake in the Milanese club.
Still four years shy of his 30th birthday, Zhang will become the youngest Nerazzurri President in the history of the club, and while many supporters and observers were left scratching their heads at the seemingly bizarre turn of events, Zhang’s appointment shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise.
Zhang has been a prominent member of the board of directors at Inter since Suning Holdings Group bought out the majority of Thohir’s shares in the summer of 2016. Zhang has played a key, prominent role in the decision making at Inter since then, and has largely overseen the day to day running of club.
Zhang’s new role was confirmed at the cub’s shareholders meeting on Friday, and the new Inter club president had a message for fans:
“I am extremely proud to lead this club into a new era. I feel the responsibility to satisfy the passion of the millions of fans all over the world and, I am more than ready to accept the challenge of president in this, the 110th year of this prestigious club.”
“Our main mission and core business as a football Club is, and will always be, the optimal sports performance on the pitch. We will continue to make the sports side the number one focus of our attention, and make sure that the team has all the best support necessary to compete and be successful at the very highest level on both the international and the domestic stage.”
” Off the pitch, we will make Inter as strong a company as it is on the pitch. We must build strong skills in the commercial and marketing areas and further strengthen the management team. In this way, we can support the growth of the commercial and marketing-led revenues of the club that will allow us to compete fully in the sporting market.”
Success breeds success. The team off the pitch must be professional, hard-working and diligent in order to support the team on the pitch.”
Zhang also hinted that Inter will be aiming to improve their global appeal and reach. He said:
“Internazionale is our name, and we will stay true to it. We will keep enlarging the scope of our business globally and we plan to further explore the potential of the Asian and American markets, including China.”
Inter club legend Javier Zanetti will continue in his role of vice-president with 53-year old Alessandro Antonello the club’s general manager.
Inter have spent in excess of £200m on new players since Suning Holdings Group acquired a majority stake in the club in 2016.
See Inter’s announcement video below
— Inter (@Inter_en) October 26, 2018
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