Leicester City owner buys OH Leuven


Oud-Heverlee football club has new owners in Thai mogul Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who also owns Leicester City

Power to Leuven

The owner of last year’s English Premier League champions Leicester City has agreed to buy Belgian Second Division football club Oud-Heverlee Leuven (OHL). King Power International Group, owned by Thai magnate Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, was the only bidder for OHL.

King Power, which bought Leicester in 2010, saw the club spectacularly win the Premier League title last year against pre-season odds of 5000-1. Srivaddhanaprabha’s son, Aiyawatt, who is Leicester vice-chair, is considering leaving his role to take the reins in Leuven.

An OHL statement stressed the ongoing “community work” and pledged that King Power “will further develop the youth programme, all in line with its major sporting ambition for the first team”.

OHL was created in the 2002 merger between FC Zwarte Duivels Oud-Heverlee (founded in 1957), Daring Club Leuven (founded 1922) and Koninklijke Stade Leuven (founded 1905). OHL were relegated from the Pro League in 2016, and this year narrowly avoided dropping into Belgium’s third tier last season, after enduring a relegation play-off round.

Their home ground, the Eneco Stadium, commonly known as Den Dreef, currently has a 10,000 capacity, but is due to be expanded to 13,000.

Photo: OH Leuven play Union Sint-Gillis at Den Dreef in February
© OH Leuven

Flemish football

Reaping the benefits of their improved youth academies, Flemish football clubs have become reasonably successful in European competitions in recent years and many players routinely join leading European clubs.
Players - Famous players from Brussels and Flanders include Vincent Kompany, Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne and Thomas Vermaelen.
Clubs - Some of the best-known local clubs include KV Mechelen, Zulte Waregem, AA Ghent and Club Brugge.
Anderlecht - The Brussels-based RSC Anderlecht is the only Belgian club in the 2013-2014 Uefa Champions League.
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