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26th Feb 2023

Premier League club set to enter race to buy Dundalk

Rory Fleming

There appears to be lots of interest in taking over at Oriel Park.

English Championship side Hull City had looked set to take over League of Ireland side Dundalk following positive discussions earlier this week.

However, it is now being reported by Matt Hughes of the Daily Mail that Premier League side Bournemouth are seeking to rival Hull City’s interest in acquiring a controlling stake at the Louth club.

Bournemouth owner Bill Foley recently purchased the club for £150 million.

Developing a multi-club portfolio has become one of the intriguing trends within contemporary football, with consortiums such as the one which owns Manchester City, obtaining stakes in sides across the globe.

Bournemouth’s owner, American businessman Bill Foley, has only been in control at the English south coast club for a number of months, but has already taken steps towards creating his own multi-club portfolio.

Having secured a 33% stake in French Ligue 1 club Lorient just last month, Foley is now reportedly considering investing into the 14-time League of Ireland winners.

Foley has already begun to build his portfolio of clubs by investing in Lorient.

Already accustomed to the world of sports team ownership, the American has owned the hockey team Las Vegas Knights since 2016, which he purchased for an exorbitant figure of $500 million.

The story of Dundalk’s potential sale took another unexpected twist on Friday evening, as Hull City officials attended the Dublin derby between St. Patrick’s Athletic and Shelbourne at Richmond Park, sparking rumours that Hull’s Turkish owners were considering alternative options.

Dundalk would not be the first Irish club to enter a multi-club ownership model though, with First Division side Waterford owned by the same consortium which controls English League One side Fleetwood Town.

Given restrictions imposed by Brexit, and the ever-improving standard of the League of Ireland, there is undoubtedly an appetite amongst many English clubs to invest in Irish football as they seek to provide their own young talent with opportunities to play in a competitive environment.

With multiple English sides interested in taking over at Oriel Park, this ownership saga may be the start of a trend in the Premier Division.

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