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Former professional ice hockey player Ralph Krueger set to join Saints as a director
Katharina Liebherr has begun to identify the people she wants to help run Saints.
The Saints owner and new non-executive chairman has wasted no time in finding the right people to fulfil her vision for the club.
After the appointment of a chief executive, which is expected this week, will come a series of non-executive appointments to the Saints board with former professional ice hockey player and coach Ralph Krueger set to be amongst them.
Also high on the list is Josef Lenhart, an Austria-based former professional footballer who now runs a sports management business.
Assuming both Krueger and Lenhart can be persuaded to join Saints in non-executive roles, there is likely to be at least one further name to be added to the list.
However, the Daily Echo understands that none of the appointments are likely to be made in coming days.
Krueger’s expertise is so sought after he is committed to the prestigious Canadian ice hockey side for the upcoming Winter Olympics. The non-executive appointments are likely to take place en masse after that.
Of the new appointments, Krueger is without doubt the highest profile.
He is wanted for his vast background in management and leadership rather than any attempt to push his ice hockey principles into football.
The Daily Echo understands he does not wish to get involved with the day to day football management and coaching side of the club.
Krueger, a 54-year-old Canadian, played 350 matches at the top level of German ice hockey as well as 45 times for the West German national side.
After retiring from playing, he went into coaching and forged a highly successful career.
Having started in the lower leagues of Germany, he took charge of VEU Feldkirch and led them to five successive Austrian championships and eventually won the European Ice Hockey League.
Krueger spent more than a decade as the coach of the Swiss men’s national ice hockey team and recently had a year in the high profile world of the NHL, as coach of the Edmonton Oilers.
The Canadian Olympic team has hired him as a special adviser to its coaching staff for the upcoming Winter Olympics.
He is considered a deep thinker and visionary in ice hockey circles.
His experience in management and leadership has even seen him sit on the council of the World Economic Forum.
Lenhart, whose name was first linked to Saints due to documents filed on the Companies House website that contradicted whether he had or had not already been appointed as a Saints director, is a 53-year-old Austrian former professional footballer.
He enjoyed a long playing career, including a spell with Wacker Innsbruck in the German Bundesliga, before founding his own sports management company in 1988 in the shape of Sporteo International Sports Management AG.
The company offer expertise in sports sponsorship, sports media and mentoring athletes.
He is also on the council of the leading European football charity, FIM (Football Is More).
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