Ex-NBA superstar Steve Nash urges Mallorca fans to be patient
Former NBA superstar Steve Nash has urged Real Mallorca supporters to be patient and told them that the club's promotion to Spain's top flight will require time.
The 42-year-old Canadian, who retired after 19 years in the NBA, is one of three shareholders of Mallorca.
A fervent football fan, Nash was in the stands during Mallorca's 1-0 home triumph over Alcorcon on Sunday.
Nash said on the club's website: "I know the fans want for this historic club to return to the Primera Division but we want for the team to be promoted when they are ready to remain there for many years and I don't think we are there yet.
"I think we need another two, three or four years to go by."
Mallorca were relegated from the Primera Division in 2013 after 16 consecutive seasons in the top flight and the club have been hit by financial and institutional turmoil in recent years.
The decision by a group of investors, including Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver and ex-Suns point guard Nash, to take control of the Balearic-based club in January has brought renewed enthusiasm on the island.
"We, the owners, are working each day to improve this club," Nash said. "This is a long-term project, we need patience and time.
"It's normal the fans, like us, want results now. But the reality is that to change the dynamics of this club, you need time and the victories will arrive."
Mallorca, coached by Fernando Vazquez Pena, have won three and lost four of their opening 11 games and Sunday's triumph lifted the Balearic-based club to 14th in the Segunda Division standings.
"I think this team has talent and plays well," Nash said. "The start of the season has been a bit difficult but it's early.
"With time, the team will improve and I hope that we will soon get good results."
Adriana Garcia is a Valencia-based football writer who covers La Liga for ESPN FC.