"Factory of football talent" - Why United World snapped up Chateauroux as Sheffield United's latest sister club

United World, the umbrella company of Sheffield United’s owner Prince Abdullah, has confirmed its latest purchase of a French second tier club after describing France as one of the biggest “factory of football talents” in the world.

By Danny Hall
Tuesday, 9th March 2021, 1:45 pm

As The Star reported yesterday, United World were close to tying up a deal for Ligue 2 side Chateauroux, to join the expanding empire of clubs including United, Al Hilal in Dubai and Beerschot in Belgium. United World also recently added a club in India to its portfolio.

“United World's decision to invest in France is not a difficult one,” a United World statement read, “given the level of development the game has reached over there specially over the last decade, with the country today hosting one of the top five leagues in the world that generates hundreds of millions of global viewership every year.

“More importantly, France has cemented its reputation as being one of the biggest, if not the biggest, ‘factory of football talents’ worldwide.

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“La Berrichonne de Chateauroux is one of the first football clubs to be established in France celebrating its 105th anniversary this year. It is one of great historic value which fits right in the group's portfolio of clubs. It also has one of the oldest football academies, one that is among the top rated in the country with many big names in French football kicking off their careers within its walls.”

Chateauroux are bottom of the Ligue 2 table, having won four of their 28 games this season, but United World say their vision is to make them “a competitive, community focused football club playing at the highest level possible in French football.”

Sheffield United owner Prince Abdullah bin Mosaad bin Abdulaziz Al Saud (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)

“We are confident that this vision will come to life sooner rather than later with the support we are getting from the city of Chateauroux for our project,” said Abdullah Alghamdi, group CEO of United World.

Prince Abdullah said of the purchase of Chateauroux: “I love sport and money. When I invested in England and Belgium, I was happy. But for France, I have a special feeling because it’s a country that reminds me of childhood.”