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Football: Xamax Ltd to fight financial woes

Members of Neuchatel Xamax have voted unanimously in favour of the football club becoming a limited company, in a move designed to alleviate crippling financial debt. The decision was taken at an extraordinary general meeting on Tuesday night.

Neuchatel's financial struggle, despite their place in the country's top division, has been seen as an indictment of the worrying situation generally in Swiss football. While Neuchatel are yet to secure their licence to play next season, many more clubs were only given permission to continue playing after promising to improve their finances.

The National League A regulations state that a club can only have debts of up to SFr 800,000 if a licence is to be granted. At the end of March, Neuchatel owed almost SFr 3.5 million.

Freddy Rumo, a former head of the Swiss football association, has been the driving force behind Neuchatel's push towards limited company status. The club hope to raise SFr 2 million from the share issue.

Neuchatel will be the ninth Swiss football club to transform themselves in line with modern business practices, following similar initiatives from Grasshoppers Zurich, Basel, Servette, FC Zurich, Sion, Lucerne, Young Boys Berne and Thun.

swissinfo with agencies