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Football: Fans all for Inverness share plan.

Byline: By Ian Orr

THE supporters of Inverness Caley Thistle last night gave unanimous backing to their board's plans to ground-share with Aberdeen.

The First Division champions are now expected to announce their intention to join the SPL tomorrow or early next week.

All indications show the board are determined to take the club's rightful place in the top flight after financial projections showed they could make a success of it.

It is estimated an average attendance of 4000 at Pittodrie next season would create a break-even scenario for Caley Thistle.

The worst-case estimate for losses is reckoned to be pounds 300,000 or slightly more on the back of a bad season.

But club directors believe they could turn a profit of up to a similar amount if they are successful and tap into a new market for sponsors in the Granite City.

The vote last night following meetings on Monday and Tuesday with shareholders and season-ticket holders respectively was non-binding and purely for consultation purposes.

Still, it was inconceivable Caley Thistle would have driven forward with the plans in the face of anything more than minor opposition.

The fact there was not a single dissenting voice or raised hand against the scheme for a third night running suggested they will take the plunge.

There was also warm applause for chairman Ken Mackie and his directors from the floor at the end of their presentation.

One supporter leaving the stadium last night said: 'The board showed they had done their homework and put forward a very convincing case regarding the benefits and risks.

'There were also assurances we would be aiming for aquick return to Caley Stadium although the slight concern is they couldn't be categoric on that.

'The bad news for Partick Thistle is, I believe the directors are going to go for it and they have an incredible weight of goodwill behind them.'

A Caley Thistle source said: 'There are a few 'i's to dot and 't's to cross but the board is convinced. I would expect an announcement early next week.'
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:May 20, 2004
Words:345
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