Maverick billionaire Clive Palmer says he’s willing to invest in a Gold Coast rugby league team, but first he wants the ARL Commission to wind up the Titans in their current guise and start a new team on the Gold Coast.
The former Gold Coast United owner, who was sensationally stripped of his A-League licence back in February, said he’d consider investing in the financially-stricken Titans if the ARLC came calling.
“I’d be happy to talk to them, obviously,” Palmer told Fox Sports.
“The Titans are a great thing.”
But first, Palmer urged the NRL to “show the same courage that Arthur Beetson had” by biting the bullet and winding up the Titans.
“Get rid of the bad things they were doing with it and have a new team on the Gold Coast [and let] it go forward,” Palmer said.
“It can’t go forward if you’re always paying money to people for consultant services, which are not necessarily in the best interests of the game.”
Speaking at the opening of a Memorial Pond named in Beetson’s honour at Palmer’s resort in Coolum, where the Queensland State of Origin squad is currently staying, the mining magnate spoke of his love for rugby league – “the greatest game of all” – and particularly his love for the Maroons.
“I like to think of Queensland as being undefeated right from the start of State of Origin, Palmer – a former centre who once played with the likes of Steve Rodgers and the legendary Beetson himself.
“They’ve only lost to New South Wales because of the referees, and they’re not going to lose the next game! They’re going to give NSW hell.
Palmer described Mal Meninga’s side as a “priceless” commodity.
“I don’t think of them as a million-dollar team, I think of them as a trillion-dollar team,” Palmer said.
“They’re priceless, they’re irreplaceable.”
Never short of confidence, the brash billionaire delivered a parting dig at New South Wales. “When you drive through Brisbane when this game’s on, it’s going to be the quietest town on earth because everyone’s going to be … glued to their television sets, knowing that Queensland’s going to come out on top,” Palmer said. “Eat your heart out New South Wales!”