Sound finances should prevent foreign takeovers of amateur football clubs
A number of amateur Flemish football clubs have been taken over by foreign clubs in recent years. This weakens the Flemish clubs and should be avoided, according to Flemish Sports minister Ben Weyts. He has set up an action plan with football bodies to tackle the issue.
Belgian football is poor in comparison to several other countries. For a foreign team it can be advantageous to buy a Belgian team, as a B-team for young players or a way to find promising new talent. Foreign players can be moved to the Belgian team, which becomes a training ground for the parent club.
Weyts wants to avoid this by ensuring the amateur teams are financially sound and do not have to sell. A system is now in place to monitor teams' finances and ensure they stay out of red. The plan also has a stronger focus on youth players, meaning teams will have to invest in young players and allow them to play for the first team.
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