Spanish clubs ratify investment plan, without Madrid, Barca

MADRID (AP) — A large majority of Spain’s top soccer clubs, with the notable exceptions of Real Madrid and Barcelona, have ratified an investment plan with a private equity firm, the league said Friday.

The league said 37 of the 42 clubs making up Spain’s first and second divisions backed the venture with private equity firm CVC to inject 1.9 billion euros ($2.1 billion) into the competitions.

Madrid, Barcelona and fellow topflight club Athletic Bilbao have criticized the venture that was first presented by the league earlier this year. They recently tried to promote an alternative investment plan through banks that they said would offer better terms.

The league said 70% of the money coming to clubs must be used for “investments linked to infrastructure, international development, brand and product placement, communication strategy, innovation and technology, and a content plan for digital platforms and social media.”

Only 15% can be used for new player signings. The other 15% will be allocated to paying off debts.

The two other clubs which opted out were not named by the league.

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