Following the Americanisation of Hull City Football Club, who have unveiled plans to change their name to the Hull City Tigers, Ladbrokes have installed Cardiff as 8/1 favourites to follow suit.
Hull – 4/6 favourites for Premier League relegation – owner Assem Allam, who believes the rebrand will heighten the club’s appeal from a commercial perspective, took this bizarre stand, stating in the Hull Daily Mail:
“Hull City is irrelevant. My dislike for the word ‘City’ is because it is common.
“City is also associated with Leicester, Bristol, Manchester and many other clubs. I don’t like being like everyone else. I want the club to be special.”
The move has been met with disdain from several corners of the east Yorkshire club’s following, but the angst is nowhere near as vitriolic as it would be if controversial chairman Mike Ashley, for example, were to ditch the second part of Newcastle United’s name and replace it with Magpies (something which he’s 14/1 to do, if you’re interested).
Had Allam not saved the club from liquidation and then bankrolled their return to the Premier League, the fans may have been a little more ardent in their opposition of the change of name.
It’s not surprising to see Premier League debutants Cardiff heading the betting to be the next club that jumps on the name-change bandwagon.
Vincent Tan moved fast to change their kit colour from blue to red shortly after seizing control of the Welsh club, as well as axing the bluebird from their badge in favour of a dragon. Both moves were designed to heighten the club’s appeal in Thailand – from where their owner hails – and neighbouring Far Eastern nations.
Fulham are second in the race to rebrand following their takeover from United States-based billionaire Shahid Khan. He also has NFL franchise, the Jacksonville Jaguars, in his ‘elite sports teams owned’ portfolio and it wouldn’t come as a surprise to the bookies if he attempted to jazz up his new toy’s name.
He’ll have to get creative here though; the Fulham Cottagers doesn’t invoke the same terror-inducing connotations as Tigers, Sharks or Pterodactyls do.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date