(Reuters) – The owners of Premier League champions Manchester City are considering investing in a club in India as part of an effort to increase their presence in Asia, chief executive Ferran Soriano has said.
City Football Group, which owns seven clubs including Major League Soccer’s New York City FC, Spanish side Girona, Japan’s Yokohama F Marinos and A-League side Melbourne City, hope to complete a deal for a club in India by the end of the year.
“We have some interest in some markets and countries where there is a genuine football passion and opportunities, like China, but also India,” Soriano was quoted as saying by the BBC.
“There might be other opportunities in Asia. We’ve been looking at India for nearly two years now. I’d say this year we’ll end up doing an investment in India.”
City Football Group recently bought a stake in Chinese third-tier side Sichuan Jiuniu FC and Soriano said they were looking to add at least two or three more clubs to their stable.
“I cannot see 10 years ahead but the group might have two or three teams more,” Soriano added. “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.”
(Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; editing by Sudipto Ganguly)