Billionaire Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has asked one of his country's top soccer experts to do some research into premier league club Fulham as he pursues a serious interest in buying it.
"The prime minister has asked me to study all of the details about Fulham to help him decide what to do next," said Thawatchai Satchakul, who is in overall charge of the Thai national team.
"He is serious about this. He's not joking," he told Reuters on Friday. "I think you may have an answer from him by mid-January."
Thaksin, who made his money in telecommunications, first expressed his interest after watching the London club beat Manchester United 3-1 at Old Trafford last month.
Fulham chairman Mohamed Al Fayed, the owner of London department store Harrods who has known Thaksin for years, said he had no intention of selling the club, but the Thai leader said that had not diminished his interest.
Thaksin said on Friday that his expression of interest in Fulham had elicited approaches from other foreign clubs, but he declined to elaborate.