Uk News Hull City are dreaming of promotion thanks to the 'Turkish Simon Cowell' and a coffee addict United Kingdom news
PremierLeague-News.Com - In an exclusive interview, the Tigers' vice chairman Tan Kesler tells Mark Douglas about his sleepless nights, new owner Acun Ilicali's big dreams and 'pressing the nuclear option' on summer transfers
PremierLeague-News.Com - Breaking Sport Transfer News ! Hull City’s vice chairman Tan Kesler is a self-confessed coffee addict who has been known to drink 12 cups of the strong stuff before midday.The charismatic Kesler, in charge of day-to-day operations at the MKM Stadium, also has a four-month-old baby at home but it is not that which is keeping him up at night as the Tigers prepare to kick off the new Championship season against Bristol City.“I have goosebumps,” he tells i over a fascinating hour-long Zoom call. “Every day I speak to [Hull City owner] Acun [Ilicali], we are so excited. Whatever happens, we feel our legacy starts here and we’re so proud to get the city buzzing again.”But his excitement is tinged with trepidation. Ilicali’s Acun Medya completed its takeover of the club in January, sweeping out the mistrusted Allam family and bringing huge excitement and intrigue locally around the man dubbed Turkey’s answer to Simon Cowell.More from FootballNewcastle open to Werner loan move, Everton in talks to re-sign Gueye, Hull's ambitious plans28 July, 2022From De Gea's texts to Rice's tweets, how male players have become allies to women's football28 July, 2022Why the Saudis are being so careful at Newcastle while chucking silly money at LIV Golf28 July, 2022So far he has succeeded in breathing new life into the club, slashing ticket prices, re-engaging with club legends and overhauling the team with a number of eye-catching signings. Twelve thousand memberships have been sold to fans eager to show their support. But now the serious stuff begins.Hull were beaten 3-0 by League One side Peterborough in a pre-season friendly last weekend and there is a dash of uncertainty about how they will start the new season with a side that now features internationals from Ivory Coast, Iran, Turkey and Colombia and is still finding its identity.“I’m not going to lie, the team is not ready yet but who is in the Championship?” Kesler admits.“I know fans are very excited and look forward to dominating the league but it’s not like this. Our chairman is so supportive, he wants to compete from the get-go. But this is a league in which you need a playing philosophy to be established.”It’s that element of risk that makes this one of the most fascinating projects in the Championship.At the heart of it is Ilicali, the former sports reporter turned entrepreneur who made his money with a TV production company that bought the Turkish broadcast rights for a string of reality TV hits, including The Voice, Survivor and Masterchef. He owns the country’s most popular TV channel and consistently tops polls as one of the most trusted media figures in his homeland.The club is now “the fifth biggest in Turkey”, claims Kesler. “Acun’s like my brother. Everyone says there’s no one in the world he can’t convince when he gets in front of them,” Kesler says.“He is one who visualises the big dreams, then I get scared and then then I try to make it happen. But we knew from day one that Hull was the right club for us. It just has such a great feeling and I say this is like another episode of my favourite show, the Acun Ilicali show.”Hull’s new owner has been dubbed the ‘Turkish Simon Cowell’ for a string of successful TV shows in his homeland (Photo: Getty)The club have not been shy about utilising Ilicali’s larger-than-life enthusiasm for the club.In an episode of the Turkish version of Survivor, the winners of a task are taken by private jet from the Dominican Republic to the MKM Stadium to watch a match.
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. It is fairly raucous and looks like everyone involved is enjoying themselves.Kesler said Ilicali was also key to securing the signature of marquee midfield signing Jean Michael Seri, who joined after helping Fulham win promotion to the Premier League.“We identified him four months ago as a key signing. He had a lot of offers and he’s got such a good agent – who is more mentor than agent.“I had to dig in to convince him but when he still wasn’t ‘right there’ with us I pressed the nuclear option and our chairman spent three days with him in Turkey. That was it, he couldn’t say no. He got so excited over our ambition.”That ambition is to go up straight away, although Kesler admits the Championship is an unforgiving division.“If I said we were building a team for 16th place, would this make me honest? Or would it make me a hypocrite. In the end I’m thinking if you don’t set high goals, where are you aiming?“We want to get promotion but we’re realistic. To give you perspective on how the Championship is perceived internationally, overseas they call it the suicide league. All the money you put in, the equity you inject, you could still find yourself in two years with no success.The new owners hope Arveladze can guide them into the Premier League (Photo: Getty)“Are we crazy? We come from a culture where we want to achieve everything quickly. It doesn’t mean if it doesn’t happen we pack up and leave. We will learn our lessons and come up with a new game plan.”Hull are managed by Shota Arveladze, the former Rangers and Ajax midfielder who replaced Grant McCann and was identified early on as Acun Medya’s man.“He turned down three significant job offers. He’s a man of honour and I respect him for that so much,” Kesler says.“It’s a big challenge but getting to know him more I truly believe he’s someone who can survive in any environment.“We want to play attacking football, we want to play attractive football. His mentality is the Dutch, possession-based football. What you see is what you get with him.”Pinning where Hull will finish in a Championship stacked with contenders is tough. But you get the impression it certainly won’t be boring. “I want our fans to enjoy the ride,” Kesler says.
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