Utrecht football club finds private buyer

Financially-troubled football club FC Utrecht has found a saviour in the form of former crane hire and transport firm boss Frans van Seumeren, the Volkskrant reports on Friday.

Van Seumeren, who used to head the Mammoet group, is paying €16m for a 51% stake in the club.
‘The Netherlands has the best football players in Europe but we are lagging at club level,’ Van Seumeren tells the paper. ‘We are not used to private investors but I think it is a good thing for Dutch football.’
Unlike banker Dirk Scheringa, who owns Alkmaar club AZ, Van Seumeren has no ambitions to be club chairman. But he will get involved with the premier division club policy.
Utrecht city council had called on the club to find a private investor to bail it out. The club’s troubles stem from a power struggle with its main sponsor, project developer Phanos, over a new stadium.
In May 2007, The Hague city council lent local club ADO €6.5m to get it out of financial difficulties stemming from the building of a new stadium. And last month, Arnhem city council bailed out local premier team Vitesse, which had debts of €12m.

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