JEDDAH: Turki Al-Sheikh, chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi General Entertainment Authority, has officially completed his takeover of Spanish football club Almeria, according to reports.
“After continuous speculation, Almeria have been sold to Turki Al-Sheikh after the operation went through for about €20 million ($22.26 million),” Spanish paper Marca said on its website.
Al-Sheikh will take over from Alfonso Garcia Gabarron as the club’s largest shareholder.
“I’ve always wanted the best for the club,” Gabarron was quoted as saying in the report. “I’ve done everything I could, and this was the offer I was waiting for. A lot of people have been interested in recent years, but none like Turki Al-Sheikh.”
Al-Sheikh posted the news on his Instagram account, sharing a screenshot of the Spanish version of the Marca report.
“One of the main objectives for the potential new owner is to carry out the long-awaited rejuvenation project to the club’s training ground,” the report added.
For Gabarron, the sale brings to an end a 16-year period as Almeria president, having acquired a majority stake in the club in July 2003.
Earlier reports claim Al-Sheikh decided to purchase the Andalusian club after selling his Egyptian team, Pyramids, to an Emirati investor.
Al-Sheikh was named the most influential Arab sports personality of the year 2017 at the 12th Dubai International Sports Conference.
During his time at the helm of the Saudi General Sports Authority, the organization launched a series of notable initiatives, which included providing financial support to Saudi football clubs, the formation of a technical committee to develop Saudi football and young, talented players, and building strong relations with continental and international sports associations.