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'Turkish Simon Cowell' completes Hull takeover - see how he compares to these egomaniac club owners

Hull City’s new owner Acun Ilicali has passed the fit and proper person test, which is more than we can say for some of these former club supremos.

Hull City's new owner Acun Ilicali made sure the Championship club hit the headlines as we entered 2022 by announcing his takeover in crazy circumstances.

Dubbed the 'Turkish Simon Cowell', Ilicali announced his takeover - confirmed today - live on O Ses Turkiye (The Voice in Turkey) on New Year's Eve.

Boasting over 13 million followers on Instagram, the broadcaster's purchase of the club has already resulted in a surge of interest in the East Yorkshire side from his homeland, with the club's Instagram account gaining 110,000 followers in 24 hours.

Some are even suggesting that Hull City change their name to the 'Turkish Tigers', a play on the controversial rebrand suggested by outgoing owners, the Allam family.

A collector of speedboats and former host of Turkey's Deal or No Deal, Ilicali would have to go a long way to prove as eccentric as some of these soccer club owners, however.

Zeljko Raznatovic

The man also known as 'Arkan', was a career criminal and notorious warlord, among many other things. He took over FK Obilic in 1996 and quickly turned the club into one of the top teams in Serbia.
Competing with the likes of other Belgrade giants Red Star and Partizan, Obilic became the first team outside those two to win the league, in 1998. It led to them qualifying for Europe where they played Bayern Munich in a Champions League qualifier.

However, it emerged the club were only able to win their first-ever league title thanks to Arkan using his contacts to threaten opposition players. Many veterans from his military unit filled their home stadium, chanting threats and pulling out weapons on the opposition. One player who came up against Obilic, told FourFourTwo that he was even locked in a garage while his team played the club owned by Raznatovic.

With tactics like these, it's no wonder Obilic went on a 47-game unbeaten league streak.

Maurizio Zamperini

Former Palermo owner Maurizio Zamperini hired and dispatched a mind-boggling 45 managers during his 17 years at the club.
Former Swansea City boss Francesco Guidolin had four stabs at management for Palermo and even managed a full year-a-and-half during one of his stints in Sicily.
Gennaro Gattuso famously lasted only six games in charge of the then-Serie B club before Zamparini had seen enough and yielded the axe that had claimed so many before.
Zamparini even famously exclaimed that he would personally execute each of his players if they did not get better at the game.
He said, "If my players keep being sh*t, I will cut off their testicles and eat them in my salad."
At least he didn't blame the manager that time.

Luciano Gaucci

It's hard to know where to start with Gaucci who made some very bizarre decisions while in charge of Italian club Perugia.
South Korean player Ahn Jung-Hwan was on loan at Gaucci's club Perugia, but during the 2002 World Cup Ahn scored a Golden Goal for his country to eliminate Italy from the tournament. This infuriated Gaucci so much that he said after the match: "I have no intention of paying a salary to someone who has ruined Italian football."
A year later, Gaucci made the bold and bizarre decision to buy Saadi al-Gaddafi - son of none other than Muammar al-Gaddafi.
In an utterly bonkers story, he appointed Diego Maradona as Al-Gaddafi's technical consultant and sprinter Ben Johnson as his personal trainer.
Not surprisingly given the duo's pedigree, he appeared only once before failing a drugs test.
Gaucci was also reportedly close to signing a woman for Perugia's men's team, saying, "Within six months we'll have a woman playing in Perugia's red strip. Obviously we couldn't pick a small woman who would get knocked over the first time she was touched! In fact the woman I've been looking for had to be tall with a masculine sort of build."
Funnily enough, his plan never came to fruition and neither did his reputation as a successful club owner.

Jesus Gil

A Spanish businessman and politician, Gil served as mayor of Marbella for 11 years and was the president of Spanish powerhouses Atletico Madrid for 16 years.
What's more impressive is that Gil went through no less than 39 managers during his time at the helm of Atletico.
He even made the bold call to shut down the club's youth academy in 1992, despite the fact they had a certain youngster on their book at the time who went by the name of Raul.
Considered one of the greatest Spanish players of all time, Raul went on to make over 550 appearances for Atletico's arch-rivals Rea. Ouch.
More brutally, Gil once said that he hoped the plane crashed and killed his team on their way back to the capital following a defeat against Las Palmas.
He was even more reckless outside the world of soccer. In 1969, his restaurant roof collapsed and 58 people died after the cement was not given sufficient time to dry. He was sentenced to five years in prison, but was pardoned and only ended up serving 18 months.


When Indian conglomerate Venky's took over Blackburn Rovers in 2010 they were a well-established Premier League club. However, two relegation in six years left them in League One and questioning why they let in new owners with no previous experience.
It proved a controversial move from the start.
First, Venky's parted ways with proven Premier League boss Sam Allardyce and appointed an unknown manager in the shape of Steve Kean. Their subsequent relegation proved Venky's had a lot to learn about when it came to managerial appointments.
However, their relegation from the top flight was not before a chicken in a cape emerged onto the pitch in what was arguably the best action to be seen from a game involving Blackburn that season

The owners went on to promise Ewood Park would become a glamorous place to visit. On the pitch they promised Champions League soccer, players like Ronaldinho and a manager like Diego Maradona. Off the pitch they were talking of appearances from global music stars Kelly Rowland and David Guetta.

Team sheets were sent to Pune for approval and club advisor Jerome Anderson from Sport Entertainment and Media Group even got the club to sign his son Myles, whose previous experience amounted to two minutes at Aberdeen.

They looked to be learning from their mistakes, however. Now in their 11th year of ownership, things are starting to look up with Tony Mowbray's team sitting third in the Championship.

Sam Hamman

Back in Wimbledon's glory years, Lebanese businessman Sam Hamman was the man who owned the Crazy Gang.
They achieved four promotions in nine years, consolidating themselves as a First Division team, but it was off the pitch where Hamman made the headlines during his time at Wimbledon.
He is believed to have made players eat sheep testicles, a popular Lebanese delicacy, as well as burning players' clothes on multiple occasions.

Hamman also vowed to kiss striker Dean Holdsworth's backside if he scored over a certain amount of goals in a season and even wrote offensive messages on West Ham's dressing room door to try and scare them.

As if having Vinnie Jones on your team wasn't already scary enough.

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