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Sports Direct struggles to manage Goals

Football field managed by Goals Soccer Centre in floodlights

Having failed to gain control of Debenhams, Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct has turned its attention to its other failing investment in Goals Soccer Centres, the operator of small-sided football centres in the UK and California in which it holds a 19% stake. But, as was the case with Debenhams, things aren't really going Mr Ashley's way.


Mike Ashley's determination to create the 'Harrods of the high street' has seen Sports Direct (LON: SPD) take stakes in several retailers in the last few years. Some of those acquisitions have performed worse than others. Goals Soccer Centres (LON:GOAL), for example (in which the company has a 19% stake), has struggled for several years and a £12m under-declaration of VAT (which could increase) has pushed the group to the brink. Shares in the company are currently suspended on AIM, pending clarification of it financial position, much of which depends on the VAT position.

Sports Direct is asking for advisers from corporate investigations and…

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