Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke has hit out at the impact of Arab investors in football, seeing the trend as detrimental.
The takeovers of clubs such as Paris Saint-Germain by the Qatar Investment Authority and Dortmund’s Champions League quarter-final opponents Malaga by Sheikh Abdullah Al-Thani in 2010 have undoubtedly changed the landscape of European football.
Speaking in an interview with German business daily Handelsblatt, Watzke was clear about opposition to this particular model of club ownership.
“It’s not fair from a sporting aspect,” the 53-year-old German said.
“I get the feeling that some sheikhs just look at the flight schedules and chose a pretty metropolis because the connections to there from the Gulf are the best. That’s not how it works, however.”
Dortmund were driven to the brink of bankruptcy in 2005 but have since become regarded as one of the best run clubs in Europe, and Watzke believes that merely throwing money at a team is no guarantee of sustained success.
“Those who put money into a football club need to be patient,” he said.
“A brand needs to develop (over time). The people from the Arab countries still have to learn that.”
Dortmund enjoyed a thumping 6-1 win over Greuther Fuerth on Saturday leaving them in second in the Bundesliga, 20 points behind champions Bayern Munich.
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