Oxford MailJudge throws out appeal over stadium's protected status bid (From Oxford Mail)

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  • "Usually, when wealthy individuals buy football clubs, that club benefits from an injection of investment into either the playing side of things, the club infrastructure such as the stadium, or both.

    Another common factor in such situations is that the wealthy benefactor ends up with less money than when he started, due to getting carried away with trying to win trophies and titles, unless in the process of improving the club he manages to seriously increase its value.

    Kassam gave an expert lesson in demonstrating that such traditions are for the weak, sentimental and senseless.

    Under his tenure we dropped out of the Football League entirely, with him managing to sell just before he was lynched.

    Under his tenure we completely lost our stadium (small, compact, characterful, ours) and exchanged it for a horrible, soul-less, windswept, incomplete, monstrosity.

    He, meanwhile, gained a new property portfolio and a sitting tenant. In essence, we were asset-stripped.

    Yes, the club had got itself into a financial mess, and sadly we were preyed upon by a very shrewd businessman who showed it is possible to make huge wadges of cash out of football club ownership.

    I had this sudden realisation the other day. I actually wish we had not been "saved" by Kassam. I wish the club had folded. We could have all been upset for a year, then got on with our lives and either spent Saturdays usefully with our families or something, or maybe picked a Premiership club and watched some decent football.

    Instead we find ourselves in the purgatory of being unable to move on from the club we loved as a kid, and spending £50 every other Saturday watching something that only us fools can call football, knowing full well we actually, really died the day Kassam took over, and that the glory days are a dim and distant past, never to be regained.

    As small as this victory is, any way of irritating Firoz Kassam is worthy of celebration."
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Judge throws out appeal over Kassam Stadium's protected status bid

Oxford Mail: Firoz Kassam Firoz Kassam

A judge has thrown out an appeal launched by the owner of the Kassam Stadium into the facility’s protected status.

Firoz Kassam and his company Firoka had taken Oxford City Council’s decision to list the Grenoble Road stadium as a community asset to a tribunal.

The judge, Nicholas Warren, ruled that the stadium was “intrinsically linked” to Oxford United.

His ruling means the stadium will keep its legal protection, meaning that if Firoka were to sell it then U’s supporters group OxVox would be able to attempt to buy it.

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