In a sign of things to come maybe, a group of current/former Chelsea and Newcastle players have come together to buy a football club in America.
The club will be based in San Diego and the players involved are former Newcastle and Chelsea striker, Demba Ba, who is acting as spokesman and appears to be in charge/leading the group.
Demba Ba’s former international teammate Moussa Sow makes up the quartet of investors made public.
It will be a newly formed club that the four invest in and it is set to start playing in the NASL from spring of 2018, in less than a year’s time.
With the massive amounts of money that players are now earning, who knows which clubs in the future could be owned by the current stars of today.
There are already plans in place for a new 10,000 seater stadium and in the meantime the team will play at the University of San Diego’s Torero Stadium.
The club’s name, logo and strip are set to be revealed shortly.
Demba Ba told Goal:
“If you look at San Diego there are not many pro teams and there are no pro teams for football.
“We think it is a very good market and if we go in, do good and work hard, we can be successful.
“It’s a market that’s growing very quick and very good, and we wanted to be a part of it, because every time America puts its hands into something they succeed. So we wanted to be a success with them.”
Demba Ba also did a question and answer with The San Diego Union-Tribune:
Q: What style of soccer do you expect your team to play?
“We are looking for emotions. When I go to the movie theatre, I want to get emotion from the actors in the movie.
“If you give that to the fans, to the people who love soccer and come and watch it, if they feel emotion they’re going to come back. And there is no better way to give emotion than to play offensive, attractive football.
“That’s what we want to do with this team. We want to play offensive football. One thing we’ve talked about is if it’s 0-0, we’ll refund fans their ticket. Maybe we won’t go that far, but that’s the mentality. Look at the owners and how we play: me, Eden is an entertainer, Moussa is an attacker, Cabaye is a creator. If we’re going to tie, we’d rather tie 4-4 than 0-0.
Q: How did you choose the other owners?
“First, they have strong and good values. Second, they are very close friends. Third, they are very excited about the project. So they just say, “Ok, we’ll follow you.”
Q: Why transition from a player to an owner?
“The first image I have of club owners is that the club is one of their toys and they do what they want and they lose a lot of money and they just don’t care about who’s working in it. I always said to myself, “No, no, there’s no chance I’ll own a club.” And then coming to America, I saw that the franchises are being run differently. We realised we could create a club where we would be the owner and we could bring our own ideas.”
Q: You have one season left under contract in China. After that, will you consider playing for your team in the NASL?
“Why not? In June 2018, I can play anywhere I want. It’s a possibility. I have put this club in this city because I believe in it. And if I believe in something, why not?”