ISPORTCONNECT / MILAN: Erick Thohir, owner of Internazionale and DC United, has denied reports that he will put his share of the Major League Soccer club up for sale to cover the debts of the Italian club he took over last autumn.

Italian reports claimed the Indonesian businessman was prepared to sell his share of United to cover Inter’s debts of  €200m and avoid touching his own private funds.

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

He said: “I would like to reaffirm the position of both DC United and FC Internazionale Milano as part of my football portfolio. 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.”

DC United are negotiating a $300m 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.