Soccer. 14 L1 and L2 clubs under foreign flag



In October 2016, Chinese businessman and billionaire James Zhou became the club’s new owner and major shareholder. AJA is back in L1 in August.


The Swiss Ahmet Schaefer took over the presidency of the Auvergne club in March 2019. Clermont moved up to L1 in the summer of 2021, for the first time in its young history, and remained there at the end of the 2021 season. 2022.


Losc was taken over in December 2020 by the Luxembourg investment fund Merlyn Partners. On the heels of the good sporting choices of the Lopez era (2017-2020), Lille was crowned champion of France 2021.


OL announced on Monday that it had entered into “exclusive negotiations” with a view to acquiring a majority stake in the Eagle Football Holdings group, belonging to the American John Textor, already owner of several football clubs. President Jean-Michel Aulas and the club’s current management team would remain in place after the transaction, the two parties have clarified.


OGC Nice was bought in the summer of 2019 by the British group Ineos, a flagship of the oil industry already known for its activities in cycling and led by British tycoon Jim Ratcliffe.

Paris SG

The club was bought in the summer of 2011 by the sovereign fund QSI (Qatar Sports Investment), which invested heavily to make PSG a European stronghold, with eight French championship titles over the period and a final. disputed Champions League (2020).


American billionaire Frank McCourt bought Olympique de Marseille at the end of August 2016 but is still waiting for his first trophy, including a lost Europa League final in 2018.


Russian oligarch Dmitri Rybolovlev arrived at the helm of Monaco at the end of 2011. Under his tenure, ASM were crowned French champions in 2017 and played in the Champions League semi-finals that year.


In September 2020, Estac was bought by the Emirati company City Football Group, owner of a dozen clubs including Manchester City. Troyes moved up to L1 in the summer of 2021, and remained there at the end of the 2021-2022 season.


At the end of July 2020, the American fund RedBird Capital Partners bought 85% of the club’s shares, before celebrating the rise of « Téfécé » in Ligue 1 for the coming season.

The L2, an opportunity for investors


The Spanish-Luxembourgish businessman Gerard Lopez, former boss of Lille, took control of the Girondins in the summer of 2021 after negotiations with the American fund King Street, shareholder of the club between 2018 and 2021. Bordeaux, relegated sportingly in Ligue 2 at the end of the season which has just ended, was administratively demoted to National (3rd division) by the DNCG, financial policeman of French football, for budgetary reasons. The club immediately appealed this decision.


The American investment fund Oaktree and the French producer Pierre-Antoine Capton bought 100% of the club’s shares in September 2020.

Le Havre

American businessman Vincent Volpe became chairman and 90% shareholder of the club in 2015.


In the summer of 2015, the club moved under the Chinese flag, bought by Ledus, a Hong Kong brand subsidiary of Tech Pro Technology. In April 2020, the Chinese real estate group Nenking officially became the owner, replacing Ledus.

Appetites up to the National


Saudi Prince Abdallah ben Moussaed and his United World Group bought the Berry club in March 2021, then a red lantern in Ligue 2. Châteauroux finished 5th in National in 2022.


At the beginning of 2021, AS Nancy Lorraine came under the control of the Partners Path Capital group of investors, including the Chinese-American Chien Lee, a former shareholder of Nice. In May 2022, the Lorraine club was relegated to National for the first time in its history.

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