Belfast Telegraph

First Minister's Question Time

It;'s the story that has gripped all of Northern Ireland football... Glentoran's great escape from the executioner in the shape of a £300,000 tax bill.

The ripping yarn has all the elements of a Jeffrey Archer novel... a 11th hour reprieve from a court winding-up order; the debt paid by a mystery benefactor; top level political involvement in the form of First Minister Peter Robinson; an equally mysterious go-between, described by Peter Robinson as ‘The Fixer'; high-powered businessmen parachuted into the boardroom; the very real prospect of Glentoran mounting a Manchester City-style challenge to their previously better-off and more successful neighbours Linfield; the revival of the stalled Blanchflower stadium plan bringing jobs and investment to Mr Robinson's heartland and rumours of a connection to expansion plans by the nearby Titanic Quarter and George Best City airport, making The Oval a valuable, saleable assets.

Peter Robinson is one of the few people who know all the answers... from the reality to the downright ridiculous. He spoke candidly to JIM GRACEY as he introduced the new-look Glens board, going forward under new chairman Terence Brannigan, head of the Confederation of British Industry in Northern Ireland and with experience of managing multi-million pound business groups.

This is what the First Minister had to say...

For the full story, see this week's Sunday Life.

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