sport

Kidd exit opens door for Koukash

John Kidd has quit as Swinton chairman in a move that paves the way for Salford owner Marwan Koukash to take over the Championship One club.

Kidd, 66, stood down with immediate effect after 11 years at the helm after watching his plans for a new stadium fall through.

"It has been difficult guiding a club with no home ground of its own and it has been a bitter disappointment that our dream of a new stadium at Agecroft has not been fulfilled," he said.

"Now is the time to hand over the reins to others to try and achieve the goal of bringing the club back within the Swinton boundary."

The club, who ground-share with Leigh at Leigh Sports Village, say negotiations are at an advanced stage on plans to re-structure the board with the arrival of new shareholders.

The Swinton Lions Supporters Trust, who will also join the board and play an integral role in the future running of the club, held talks with Koukash on Thursday night.

The millionaire racehorse owner, who has made a major cash injection in an attempt to transform the fortunes of Super League club Salford, has spoken of his desire to take over Swinton and build a new stadium.

"The aim is to make Swinton far stronger and see them emerge as a force in the Championship," Koukash said. "They could in the future go all the way.

"Manchester currently has two football clubs in the Premier League. I see no reason why the same thing could not happen in Super League with Swinton and Salford up there together competing."

Former Wales international Ian Watson has been appointed player-coach of the Lions, with Marlon Billy as his assistant, and they have assembled a squad of 15 players so far.