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Leandro Rodrigues and Swansea City - The truth starts here
Sunday, 22nd May 2022 08:00 by @Cornish67David & Keith Haynes

When Luke Phelps at the 72.co.uk revealed Swiss based Leandro Rodrigues, the CEO of VL Gold Dubai was interested in Swansea City it did come as a shock. We like many were surprised at this bolt out of the blue. Usually a website with so much Swansea City content as we have every day will get some indication of a story such as this. So, when it happens in this way we really do have a duty to have a dig around.

So we spoke to Leandro Rodrigues. He said he would call us back. It didn’t happen.

There is a back fill to Rodrigues, he is a self made millionaire, and that isn’t in dispute, the amount may well be, but he seems comfortable enough. Leandro is keen to get involved in some form of ownership of a football club. However, it won’t be for the first time. We also know his father has been of huge personal and financial help to him. Leandro loves to be seen as a grateful and humble god fearing self made person. He has a plethora of snaps online with all manner of people from all over the world, there is no denying his wealth, whatever that may be. However, it isn’t Championship football club wealth from what we can disclose at this time. Maybe we will be put right as this story progresses ?

But all we keep hearing is there’s nothing to see here.

That is apart from hundreds of photos that always contain Leandro pictured around the world with a variety of others. There are snaps from Milan to Dubai, and Rio to Barca. As a lower league footballer by all accounts ( there are others of the same name and it all gets very confusing ) he seems to have enjoyed some success and boasts he is the ‘special one’ at Florida Bears football club. Company records show a Leandro R Costa as involved at that club, nobody else, and that’s not unusual for a last name in South America to be either moved to a middle name or actually a middle name to feature as a last name. It happens in many Latin American countries. It just seems slightly strange he would put that on his social media platforms when the football clubs facebook page is relatively redundant and their website URL has never worked. There’s been little on this venture in four years.

The registered address for the football club principal is -

COSTA LEANDRO R (P,D) 9325 SW 108TH STREET, KENDALL, FL 33176 USA.

Our checks confirm this is Leandro Rodrigues. There is nothing on the history of the club, where they play now, or indeed if they still play today. Everything dries up around nine months after he formed this team or club. If it ever got off the ground. These days they offer some form of gym activity but it doesn’t make a lot of sense in the advertisement - they have one review and spelling mistakes in the text.


The club motto is ‘We belong to Jesus’ 39 followers

VL Gold Dubai on the other hand are the owners of a plush internet site, it boasts a huge amount of investments and capital growth opportunities for its clients. The site contains information that Reuters, CNBC, Nasdaq and investing.com. have all featured Leandro’s company. We tried to source information on Leandro and VL Gold from these sites and came up with nothing from our searches. Now it could be there’s a reason for this ? We searched Bloomberg as well, we couldn’t find the company on there either. Nor any reference to Leandro. Hopefully this will be cleared up in due course ?

Back to the takeover …

Speaking to a newspaper in Brasil Rodrigues told journalist Carlos Ferreira he will be revealing his purchase of Swansea City ‘in a few weeks’ We now believe, without information to the contrary, including others we have spoken to that there is an ulterior motive to his Swansea City suggestion. Without any other evidence the belief is his Swansea City interest was merely to gain some kudos with the owners of third tier Brazilian side Club de Remo. However, we are yet to hear from Leandro, despite an agreement to talk late yesterday evening. Club de Remo are a club he has been cited as wanting to invest in. President of the Board of Directors Milton Campos was even offered an aircraft which was on stand by to take him and other Remo dignitaries to Dubai to get things underway. Speaking to journalist Carlos Ferreira about his interest in Club de Remo, Leandro said “ We are not looking for an immediate yes or no, under any circumstances . We want an official 'ok' from the club. ( to start a takeover ) This would take place face-to-face. Or in my office in Dubai. I made an aircraft available to pick up the Remo delegation. Or, if they don't understand it that way, at an opportune moment, due to my schedule, I'll be in Dubai to talk in person”

He has even offered sufficient money to get Remo out of the third tier immediately.

Rodrigues has been viewed with some suspicion during the last few days especially by the clubs fans, Remo club president Fabio Bentes along with Milton Campos have both denied any talks have taken place regards the sale of the Club de Remo. And there in is the issue. When Rodrigues initiated the interview with Carlos Ferreira it was clear he wanted to emphasise just how much of an interest he has in football. Did he literally just pluck Swansea City out of the air without any knowledge of the clubs ownership position ? And if so has he used the clubs name to enforce his position to get an interest at Club de Remo.

Without that return call from him we cannot say at this time.


Club de Remo directors confirm there have been no talks with Rodrigues

Due to our natural investigative instincts, ( don’t laugh ) and spurred on by Luke Phelps and his initial story we got busy. The bizarre nature of how all this has come about, and as a result of our review of what we now know we believe this Swansea City story is one to be taken with this weeks pinch of salt. Now, it could well be Rodrigues has tainted his character by talking of a Swansea takeover as well, allegedly of course. That’s not going to help matters long term. However, we have left the door open for him to reply. Talking to our own sources on Saturday morning, one in an extremely privileged position in the USA we were told that the majority shareholders have absolutely no intention of selling Swansea City or any controlling stake they have in the club. They have stated they would welcome any ‘appropriate’ investment in the swans, and they have done that over recent years, but we were told very clearly this story is one hundred percent manufactured and untrue.

No talks have taken place.

It isn’t believed Rodrigues has anywhere near the financial backing to even consider running a team which is still potentially to be able to challenge for a return to the top flight of English football next season. Unless he has a wealth of backers, which he has never mentioned, there seems little in this latest story. The running costs at Swansea over a few months alone would clean him out of any finance he has spare, there is a wage bill in the many millions each year, and that would cripple him. His wealth just doesn’t match up to his claims as it stands today. And let’s dwell on this for a moment. Why would the clubs majority owners in the USA sell the club in the coming few weeks ? With assets amounting to millions of pounds in the playing staff alone, and it’s well in excess of thirty million as a conservative estimate. Why would such a small takeover figure given by Rodrigues even tickle the interest of Swansea City ?

This whole thing is being called a ruse by a man who wants to gain some kudos with a Brazilian third division club with a passionate and devoted fan base. Some people really do have to realise that messing with football clubs, and in what can only be perceived in an underhand way is no way to introduce yourself to the football world. If of course that is the case. There are always two sides, and that is the truth and the perceived truth. As stated we have contacted Rodrigues to get his side of the story, we have had short dialogue but the promise of a call back has yet to materialise.

Let’s all smile this morning and raise our morning coffee to Leandro Rodrigues. ( Costa etc )

“In the next two weeks, we will be able to provide the entire Brazilian press with information about the acquisition of Swansea, an issue that will make many people change their minds. What we can say is that we are available to start the rite in a professional, transparent and ethical way with Clube do Remo. It is enough that it proves itself favourable”

He sounds extremely convinced on this matter.

For now we file this under Tony Petty, Man Utd football juggler Michael Knighton, or even convicted safe cracker George Reynolds. It just doesn’t ring true. Unless of course Leandro Rodrigues wants to put the record straight ?

Photographs open source & Reuters



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