Dubai: Abu Dhabi United Group for Development and Investment (ABUG) has taken over the Premier League football club Manchester City from its owner, Thaksin Shinawatra, former prime minister of Thailand.
The club ownership exchanged hands after a deal between the Abu Dhabi firm and the former Thai leader, Arabian Business magazine reported.
Soon after, the new owners sanctioned a bid to sign Spurs striker Dimitar Berbatov before the close of the transfer window which he reportedly accepted .
City’s offer for Berbatov is reported to be in excess of $58 million and would set a new British transfer record.
ADUG will be represented on the new board of Manchester City by Hydra Properties CEO Dr Sulaiman Al Fahim. Al Fahim, who led negotiations, confirmed today the deal had been struck.
“We will release details later, but this is a great event for both the club and Abu Dhabi. Our goal is very simple to make Manchester City the biggest club in the Premier League, and to begin with, to finish in the top four this season,” he said.
Al Fahim stressed that the Group will solve all the club problems and clear any pending payments, and will comprehensively support the club by bringing in some of the best football players in the world.
Manchester City’s future has been uncertain following legal problems faced in Thailand by Shinawatra, who will stay on as honorary president of the club without any administrative responsibilities.