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US fund gets green light to buy Ligue 1 club Bordeaux

Bordeaux (AFP) – Local French officials removed the last obstacle Friday to the sale of Ligue 1 club Bordeaux to an American investment fund in a deal worth 75 million euros ($86.6 million).

The city’s municipal council voted overwhelmingly to approve the American takeover which is expected to be concluded by the end of the month.

The deal comes two years after Ligue 1 rivals Marseille were bought by US real estate magnate Frank McCourt, the former Los Angeles Dodgers owner, for 45 million euros.

The council vote officially authorised the transfer of rental obligations for the club’s Matmut Atlantique ground, owned by the city, from media group M6, Bordeaux’s owners for 19 years, to the US fund, General American Capital Partners (GACP).

Approval was widely expected after the fund’s chief Joseph DaGrosa reassured council members about the fund’s commitment to the deal behind closed doors Thursday.

Bordeaux mayor Alain Juppe said that the council had received clarifications about the transfer of rental obligations to GACP.

“We received the same level of guarantees (from GACP) as we had in the past,” he said.

The deal will be concluded when accounts are settled at the end of the month, said Nicolas de Tavernost, M6 president, adding the media group were leaving the Ligue 1 club on a sound financial footing.

New York-born investor DaGrosa, who co-founded GACP in 2016, has no background in football but said he would treat Bordeaux like a “jewel”.

He said he had a shortlist of three names for club president, who would be French and would be appointed within days.

Bordeaux are among the most successful French clubs, winning the Ligue 1 title six times. Currently they stand seventh in the table.

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