Welsh and All Black stars linked to the next super rich club in France


All Blacks star Beauden Barrett and Wales sniper Dan Biggar and among two names linked to what many claim to be France’s last rich new rugby club – Béziers.The pair is part of a growing list of players linked to the ProD2 side, which are said to be taken over by billionaire investors from the United Arab Emirates. The investors are believed to be members of a Middle Eastern royal family and plan to pump millions of people into the modest AS Béziers Hérault.

Investors should wipe out the club’s € 5 million in debt and invest heavily in the power of the stars to push the team into the Top 14. Barrett and Biggar should be at the top of their wish lists, reports said.

Current San Diego Legion and All Black veteran Ma’a Nonu is also a potential target, while French international Benjamin Fall is already on board, provided the club’s takeover agreement continue.

Former French international Christophe Dominici would represent the new investors, and they are already active on the market, according to French media RugbyRama.

Béziers has won eleven French championship titles since its inception in 1911, but has fallen in recent years, even in the face of the ignominy of relegation to Federale 1 at the end of the 2008-09 season. They rank 9th in ProD2 and face a complete overhaul if they want to win the relegation of the second super competitive division, which currently includes tastes from Grenoble, Biarritz, Perpignan and Colomiers.

The Top 14 has seen huge external investments from multimillionaire and billionaire owners in the past two decades. Racing 92, Stade Français, Montpellier and especially the famous Toulon are among the clubs which have exerted an enormous financial influence thanks to super-rich owners who have taken over and opened their purses.

Critics of this trend claim that it distorts the market, inflating player wages and, ultimately, making the sport unsustainable.


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