Dubai buys Spanish La Liga club, to rename ‘Team Dubai’

Royal Emirates Group deal rumoured to be with debt-ridden Spanish club Zaragoza
Royal Emirates Group said it would rename the unnamed Spanish club Team Dubai
By Shane McGinley
Tue 19 Apr 2011 05:34 PM

Royal Emirates Group, the Dubai investment group chaired by HRH Sheikh Butti Bin Suhail Al Maktoum, has bought a top-league Spanish football team set to be renamed ‘Team Dubai’.

The privately-held firm said in a statement Tuesday that it has taken over ownership of a La Liga – Spain’s premiership league – team in a deal to be announced Thursday.

“The said team will be named as ‘Team Dubai’,” the statement said.

The unnamed club is speculated to be the debt-ridden Spanish club Zaragoza. Spanish media reports in February a Dubai sovereign wealth fund had made a €3m buyout offer for the team.

The deal reportedly included a guarantee to service the club’s debts, taking the value of the transaction to around €130m.

Zaragoza management did not comment on the deal at the time.

Spain’s ‘La Liga’ includes some of the richest teams in the world, including Atlético Madrid, Barcelona, Málaga, Real Madrid and Valencia.

A spokesperson for Royal Emirates Group said the club’s chairman and several high-profile players were due to arrive in Dubai in the next 24-hours.

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