SWITZERLAND, JULY 17 – Nneka Ede, a Nigerian businesswoman, has become the first African woman to own a European football club, after acquiring Portuguese third division club, Lusitano Ginasio Clube.
According to a statement on Thursday, Ede has secured 100 percent ownership of the 108-years-old club, which last played in the Portuguese top-flight division in the 1950’s.
The statement from the club read: “After months of negotiations with different entities, an agreement has been reached with Mrs Nneka Ede, a sports enthusiast and entrepreneur from Nigeria, a country filled with people as passionate and fiery about football as us and which incidentally share the same green and white in their flags, towards the transfer of the ownership of the SAD to the latter that will help us in our mission to take Lusitano to the next level.”
Speaking on the development, Ede said the football club acquisition will help foster a greater relationship between both countries.
“I am excited about this opportunity and I hope that this new chapter will deepen the already great sporting relation between Nigeria and Portugal,” she said.
“And to continue with the rich history of Lusitano club and provide a pathway for young talent to develop and shine through.”
The club, which has a long and rich history spanning over a century, has Abraham Adelaja, a Nigerian forward, in its squad.
Lusitano FC reached their pinnacle in the 1950’s when the club competed for 14 consecutive seasons in the Primeira Divisão (first division or tier 1).
They still hold a position among the 30 clubs in Portugal with more participation at tier 1 level in the country.