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Federer's home club Basel to invest 20m euros in CCFC

CHENNAI: Chennai City FC (CCFC) are all set to sell 35 per cent of the club’s stake to Swiss club FC Basel. It was also learnt that the Champions League regulars will also invest a huge sum of approximately 20 million euros in the I-League club. While Basel is well-respected in Europe, tennis legend Roger Federer, who comes from the same city, is a huge fan of the club and is often seen in the stands when he is in Switzerland.

Further details about the deal will be announced in New Delhi on Wednesday in the presence of FC Basel president Bernhard Burgener and CEO Roland Heri and CCFC president Rohit Ramesh. All India Football Federation president Praful Patel and general secretary Kushal Das are also likely to attend the event.

A top CCFC official confirmed the development. “It is an unprecedented deal in Indian football where a club will be selling its stakes to a European club. FC Basel has a history of 125 years and is widely followed in Switzerland and Europe. So it feels great when such a big club recognizes our work and wants to invest in us. The club will bring in a huge investment of 20-25 million euros and will be involved in our day-to-day processes,” the official told TOI in a recent chat. With Indian football likely to have only one league from next season, the investment might also pave the way for I-League club CCFC to join ISL. The official, though, didn’t want to comment on the club’s future. “It is still a long way off. We don’t yet know whether we will have one league or continue with two leagues from next season,” said the official.

Basel will also have a player exchange programme, including first team players, with CCFC and help the club with technical knowhow, which involves grassroots programme, coaches’ education, youth development and exposure trips. They will also help CCFC in improving their infrastructure which will involve building CCFC’s own stadium.

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