DC United majority owner Erick Thohir denies he'll sell off club shares to pay for Inter Milan debt

Erick Thohir - D.C. United (July 10, 2012)

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D.C. United majority owner Erick Thohir is denying reports that he will put his share of the Major League Soccer club up for sale to cover the debts of Inter Milan, the Italian giants he took over last fall.

Italian outlet Il Sole 24 Ore reported earlier this week that Thohir was prepared to sell his share of D.C. United to cover Inter’s debts of “200 million euros” and avoid touching his own private funds, built primarily through years as a media mogul in Indonesia.

Thohir and Washington, D.C., lawyer and sports agent Jason Levien joined the investment group behind D.C. United in July 2012, and Thohir became a controlling shareholder and club president at Inter last October.

"I would like to reaffirm the position of both D.C. United and FC Internazionale Milano as part of my football portfolio," Thohir said via statement. "These assets are integral parts of my international sports investment strategy and I look forward to growing both brands well into the future. I deny, in no uncertain terms, recent media reports which indicated otherwise.

“My commitment and dedication to both DCU and Inter is unwavering, and I am focused on producing results both on and off the pitch at both clubs."

D.C. United are in the process of negotiating a $300 million stadium deal with local officials to build in the Buzzard Point area of Southwest D.C., a move championed by Thohir and Levien shortly after they took over. The club hopes to begin play at the site in 2016.