The news that Singapore's eighth richest man, Peter Lim, has completed a takeover of Valencia will come as a major relief for Los Che supporters. Lim is the owner of 70.4 percent of the shares owned by the club's foundation, and thus has completed a protracted deal for the club.
Valencia supporters' immediate emotions will be joy. The club has been weighed down by debt, and whilst it was always stressed that the debt was owed to the bank, rather than the tax-man, there will be widespread reassurance, given that Lim will be able to aid the payments. He has also reportedly committed to finishing Valencia's new stadium, the Nou Mestalla, by 2019.
Valencia have struggled to hold onto their top players over recent seasons. David Silva, Juan Mata, Roberto Soldado and David Villa have been moved on, in order to ease the precarious finances. The days of big money signings Joaquín, Éver Banega and Pablo Aimar are in stark contrast to Valencia's recent transfer dealings. The emphasis has been on introducing youth players into the first-team squad, such as Fede and Paco Alcácer, whilst adding experienced free transfers in Seydou Keita and Philipe Senderos.
As a result of the changeover in playing staff, Valencia have toiled in La Liga this season. The mid-season arrival of Juan Antonio Pizzi steadied the ship, but they are still destined to finish outside of a Europa League spot. The tournament has been kind to Valencia, who eased their way through the group stages, before a thrilling tie with Basel, and last-minute semi-final heartbreak against eventual winners Sevilla.
Lim's arrival should enable Valencia to keep hold of their star players, especially Alcácer and Dani Parejo, whilst allowing for more progressive dealings in the transfer market. He has agreed to invest €60 million in the summer on new players, which will excite Los Che's supporters, although uncertainty remains around Pizzi's position as the man to take Valencia forward.
Valencia belong in the top bracket of La Liga, and seeing them finish below cross-town rivals Levante would be a realisation of how far they have fallen in recent seasons. Lim, a keen sport enthusiast, will be keen to see Valencia reestablish themselves as one of La Liga's strongest teams as soon as possible, although given the revolving door of managers, the best thing he could do is allow Pizzi to continue in his role.
As always with major foreign investors, when the excitement about the finances wears off, the worries about the owners interests become apparent. Hopefully for Valencia, Lim is dedicated to the task of securing Valencia's future, and has the club's best interests at heart. Only time will tell, but for the immediate future, Valencia supporters can breathe a big sigh of relief that the crippling debt has been somewhat sorted.
Onwards and upwards for Valencia, who will be hoping for a drastically better La Liga campaign next season.
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