Nice are set to spend big in the final week of the transfer window on no less than four players, following their takeover by Jim Ratcliffe.
Ratcliffe, who owns cycling Team Ineos and Swiss Super League club Lausanne-Sport, bought the club managed by Patrick Vieira on Monday for £91million.
With the European transfer window closing on Monday, Britain’s richest man is set to make an immediate impact, with the star arrival being 21-year-old Ajax forward Kasper Dolberg.
WHO IS JIM RATCLIFFE?
Sports teams owned: Team Ineos cycling, Ineos Team UK (sailing) Lausanne-Sport, Nice
Net worth: £8billion
The other players on the way to Nice are PSG defender Stanley N’Soki, FC Lorient forward Alexis Claude-Maurice and Napoli’s Algerian midfielder Adam Ounas, according to French outlet Nice-Matin.
Speaking on the club website on Monday, Ratcliffe admitted his delight at finally sealing the deal. ‘It has been quite a long journey getting here, but it is unique, and we were determined to complete the purchase of the club,’ said Ratcliffe. ‘We have looked at a lot of clubs in the manner we look at businesses in INEOS – for value and potential – and Nice fulfils that criteria.
‘With some sensible, measured investment, we want to establish Nice as a team that competes in European club competition on a regular basis. And importantly, sustain it.’ Manager Patrick Vieira recently complained about his inability to sign new players given the takeover talks, saying ‘the takeover has maybe taken longer than expected.
It has been difficult to make signings.’ Despite this, his side have started the Ligue 1 season with two wins out of two, after 2-1 victories against Amiens and Nimes. This follows a dreadful conclusion to pre-season, when the side lost 6-1 and 8-1 to Burnley and Wolfsburg respectively.
Ratcliffe will have the chance to watch his new club in action for the first time on Wednesday, when they host Marseille at the Allianz Riviera.