The future of Salford City is only more exciting with the addition of David Beckham as an owner say leading club officials.
At a press conference on Wednesday morning co-owner Gary Neville, alongside fellow Class of 92 members Nicky Butt, Ryan Giggs, Phil Neville and Paul Scholes, announced the news.
Beckham will take a 10% stake which makes CO92 the largest shareholders with 60% between them, although Peter Lim remains the single largest shareholder with 40%, and the acquisition will have no impact on the day-to-day running of the club. The move is subject to FA approval.
“It’s really exciting I feel like it’s a new era for the club. I think the interest that we had at the beginning when the Class of 92 first came in will reinvigorate,” said Chairman Karen Baird.
“I expect we’ll see more people come through the gates to see if they can see David Beckham, and going forward it will help raise the profile of the club around the world.”
Club president Dave Russell welcomed the announcement as another big step in the club’s history, and is looking forward to see where Salford City will continue to go having been involved since the days when the club were in the local regional divisions.
“It’s great news isn’t it! We thought he was coming with the lads originally a few years ago because he was one of the Class of 92, but it’s great news he got here eventually. The lads have laid the ground work for him and it’s great times ahead.
“David’s digs were near The Cliff, next door to The Cliff at Mr and Mrs Kay’s, and Dave watches us so it’ll be old acquaintances renewed.
“The progress over the last few years, it couldn’t have gone better could it? If we could win the league, or promotion, this year and get into League Two, that’d be great wouldn’t it!”
Salford has already come a long way since the Class of 92 took over in 2014 with three promotions in four years, and a huge redevelopment of Moor Lane to the 5,000-plus capacity Peninsula Stadium.
The arrival of Beckham is another example of the ambition of the club, but Sporting Director Chris Casper says that it needs to be supported by what happens on the pitch too.
“It’s really important, it shows the ambition of the club and like Gary was saying it couldn’t happen right at the start when the lads came in but obviously as things have progressed, and with David doing what he’s been doing, that’s now cleared up the opportunity to get back together. He brings more experience that the club will benefit from massively.
“It continues to grow the profile of the club too, whether it has an impact on bringing players in, that’s down to the performance on the pitch as well.
“We’ve put ourselves in a good position but I think it’s important now that we take stock of where we’re up to. We’ve got some massive games coming up from now until the end of the season and we’re confident in the squad, the ability of the squad, we’ve got a very good manager so we’ve done a lot of the hard work, but now a lot of the harder work starts.”
Manager Graham Alexander added: “It’s exciting news for the club and I think it’s a natural thing to happen with their relationship together. It’s where they all started, Gary talked about them coming as boys to Man United and Salford was the base for that.
“It’s really positive news for the club and I look forward to meeting him in time and seeing what he thinks of the team, the club’s progress; it’s all exciting.”