MANCHESTER CITY’S owners have added a NINTH club to their stable by buying Belgian second-tier side SK Lommel.
The City Football Group have agreed to take over the club – who are currently sixth in their league.
The deal is believed to have cost them close to £2million – which will wipe out the debts and secure a licence for them to play next season.
Lommel have been in talks with various different possible buyers in recent months but the CFG have moved quickly.
And the Belgians are believed to be delighted their future is secure after falling on hard times recently.
As well as City the CFG also have clubs in New York, Melbourne, Japan, China, Spain, Uruguay and India.
And their stable could well reach double figures by the end of the year.
A £12million deal was in place to purchase French side Nancy but it was put on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic.
CFG sources say they remain hopeful of finalising that deal – although they will re-assess once the current global crisis has settled down.
In November, the group was boosted by a £389million cash injection from US investment firm Silver Lake.
That money will underpin the CFG over the coming months but also allows them to continue with some of their expansion plans.
Speaking last year, the group’s chief executive Ferran Soriano said he aimed to add ‘two or three more clubs’ to the stable.
Since then they have acquired both Mumbai City and Lommel – while a deal for Nancy is also pending.
He said in 2019: "I cannot see 10 years ahead but the group might have two or three teams more.
"Is this going to change in five years and we’re going to have more? Maybe, I don’t know that.
"But to complete the vision that we had six years ago, I think we will have maybe two or three clubs more."
The feeling at City now is that there could well be more new club on the horizon.
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