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American patience in the Premiership

Mar 15, 2013, 10:58 PM EDT

Reading v Aston Villa - Premier League Getty Images

The list of American owners who have controlling interest in Premier League clubs has grown at an astonishing rate over the last ten years.

The Glazer family own Manchester United, John W. Henry is the principal owner of Liverpool, Stan Kroenke controls a majority share of Arsenal, Ellis Short is the owner and chairman of Sunderland and Randy Lerner of Cleveland Brown fame has since 2006 sunk a fortune into Aston Villa.

I finish that list with Randy Lerner as he is the man who currently has the most to lose. Villa sit just above the relegation zone and know that any slip up against QPR in tomorrow’s relegation six-pointer could have some staggering financial implications.

Lerner has spent incredible amounts of his estimated $800 million fortune on the Midlands club over the last seven years with only a League Cup final appearance to hang his hat on. He knows full well that a trip to the Championship will take a massive bite out of his wallet should that happen as the TV money starts to dry up almost immediately.

Of the five clubs at the bottom of the table, three have already fired their managers and the pressure on current Villa coach Paul Lambert is immense. So far Lerner has shown patience, a loss tomorrow and the American will have no option than to look at the bottom line and call in a Red Adair type figure to rescue his club from the ultimate ignominy.

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