A US investment group has completed the takeover of Danish second-tier club FC Helsingor, with the aim of using it as a place to develop the next generation of American talent.
The group is led by Jordan Gardner, a minority investor in Swansea City and Irish club Dundalk FC. The consortium also includes four other businessmen who have ties with football in the United States and overseas.
“I’m incredibly excited to complete the acquisition of a majority stake in FC Helsingor,” said Gardner. “The ownership group we have assembled is as strong as any you will see in global soccer, and we are eager to leverage the connections and expertise we have to make Helsingor the next hub for football talent development.”
FC Helsingor is currently second from bottom of the First Division, having been relegated from the Superliga last year, but Gardner believes it has huge potential.
With the help of relaxed foreign player restrictions in Denmark, the club plans to place rising US prospects into the academy before moving them up to the first team. Gardner believes FC Helsingor will represent a good pathway for American players to get meaningful first-team action, in part due to the rising number of foreign players in Major League Soccer squads. Ultimately the plan is to sell these players to bigger European clubs.
He told Forbes in February: “The club has very, very good infrastructure. We looked at clubs in the Superliga and all across the map in Scandinavia, and some of them had no full-time employees. Some of them had very poor stadium infrastructure; some of them had no academy.
“Helsingor has a brand-new stadium opening up this summer, it has good academy infrastructure for a club of that size, and it has good infrastructure on the commercial side.
“So rather than having a team in the Superliga or Norwegian first division, we want to find a club with the right recipe that we can come in and execute our model.”