Soccer

Inter owner Thohir elected as club president

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MILAN (AP)

Inter Milan owner Erick Thohir has been elected as club president, ending Massimo Moratti's 18-year spell in charge.

Thohir, who bought a majority stake of Inter last month, was confirmed as the new president at an extraordinary board meeting on Friday.

''In 10 years' time only 10 clubs will be remembered in the world, only those which are winners, nice to watch and financially healthy,'' Thohir said. ''Inter has to be and will be one of those. With this new management, with the definition of clear objectives and with everyone's collaboration we will make sure Inter will be among those 10 clubs.

''This new group has to be sufficiently creative to find new fans for the club, to attract them from Asia and from the United States. Creative in creating a winning squad and with (coach Walter) Mazzarri we are already on the right path.''

Thohir, along with Rosan Roeslani and Handy Soetedjo, has a 70 percent stake in the 18-time Italian champions. Moratti has reduced his shares in Inter from 98.3 percent to 29.5 percent.

''I want to give a really special thanks to my friend and new partner Massimo Moratti for his confidence and support and I also want to thank my associates Rosan and Handy, who I have known for more than 20 years,'' Thohir said.

Moratti will have no role on the board but has been confirmed as honorary president, while his son Angelomario has been named as vice president, alongside Soetedjo.

''I am very happy to have found the new owner of this glorious club,'' Moratti said. ''I am certain that they are more than prepared to continue bringing success to these beloved colors.

''Personally I am honored to have been president of Inter for so many years.''

Moratti took over the presidency when he bought the club in 1995. During his time in charge, Inter won five consecutive Serie A titles and also won the Champions League and Italian Cup in 2010.

The 68-year-old Moratti's last game as president was Inter's 2-0 victory over Livorno.

Thohir is also part owner of the Philadelphia 76ers and D.C. United. He is chairman of the Mahaka Group, which has business interests in media and entertainment.

Inter's last trophy was the 2011 Italian Cup. The team is currently fourth in the Italian league, seven points behind leader Rome - the only other Serie A club to have foreign owners.

Roma, which has yet to lose a game this season and won a record 10 matches to open the season, was taken over by a group of Boston executives in 2011.

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