Aston Villa fans join Real Madrid on Real Oviedo board after buying shares
By Lewis Rymond
Like some fellow MOMS writers, I am now a part-owner in a Spanish football club. Before you think I’m Staffordshire’s answer to Roman Abramovich, I shall explain…
With a few spare pounds in my PayPal account I decided to buy a couple of shares in Real Oviedo, a team in the third tier of the Spanish football league and based in Asturias. I didn’t do it with a view to making profit, of course, but to gain satisfaction in knowing I might just have helped a club to stay afloat in difficult financial times. Real Oviedo, suffering in the current Spanish chronic economic situation, have called upon football fans to buy shares in the hope of preventing their liquidation – and it seems to be on track to meet those targets.
Football fans around the world have contributed to the funding of Real Oviedo, who in the 2000/01 season, played in La Liga alongside the famous giants of Spanish football.
Many UK football fans have donated, and there’s even a UK fanbase developing for fellow ‘part-owners’ of Real Oviedo. Before their recent match against Real Madrid C, a standing ovation was observed as a tribute to foreign shareholders, and banners with the Union Jack could even be seen around their stadium. Inspired by the support, Real Oviedo went on to win the match 1-0, watched by over 20,000 fans. Those that had bought shares in the club were able to attend the match for free.
It is refreshing to see football provoke such a reaction throughout the world. The medium of Twitter has helped Real Oviedo’s cause tremendously; searching Real Oviedo ‘hashtags’ will show you pictures of multilingual thank-you banners around their stadium and crowds of supporters marching down the streets of Asturias.
Real Oviedo have produced some great footballing talents over the years, with SantiCazorla, Juan Mata and Michu amongst their former players – and all of these have contributed to the financial plight of their old club.
Elsewhere in the footballing world, Real Madrid bought €100,000 worth of shares in Real Oviedo – a lovely gesture. Two other MOMS writers also have shares in the club – how many other blogs can say they sit on a board alongside Real Madrid?!
It might seem irrelevant to write about a third-division Spanish team but it is a perfect example of the community spirit that exists within football, regardless of country or league. In a sport with such an unpredictable environment, and one that is now strongly dependent on financial foundations, these acts of generosity are needed in order to help the sport we love.
It is stories like this that show that despite the level of competitiveness, members of the footballing world will never be averse to helping one another out during difficult times. It also highlights how shocking the distribution of money is in modern day football. A top earning Premiership player could probably clear Real Oviedo’s debt in a few months.
When Real Oviedo send me a certificate of my shares, I’ll be able to hang it on the wall and take pride in my small contribution to the worldwide football community, and that the kind gestures that are helping Real Oviedo’s plight will hopefully always be around in football.
People looking to buy shares have until the 17th November (tomorrow) so if you want to get involved, act fast!
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