Two months ago Sporting announced that its new owner is the Orlegi Group. This Mexican company, headed by Alejandro Irarragorri, is one of the 78 that this year have been documented as multi-owners of clubs. In his case he has three: Atlas and Santos Laguna in Mexico and the already mentioned Sporting, the first in Europe.
Despite being very close to acquiring other entities such as Zaragoza or even, in its day, Newcastle, the European incursion begins with Gijón. A spicy Mexican derby awaits there against Oviedo, which this summer went from belonging to Grupo Carso to being owned by Grupo Pachuca. Mexicans both, too.
The business boom and the passion for soccer are going hand in hand in Mexico. The irruption in Europe is a logical consequence. Grupo Orlegi paid 40 million for 73% of Sportinga figure that he hopes to amortize as he has done with his other two Mexican clubs. Atlas won the league title in 2020 and 2021 after 70 years without being a champion; Santos Laguna, meanwhile, has four titles since it was acquired by Irarragorri in 2009his debut as an owner.
That is to say, in a decade you can go from the doubts that Sporting dragged to the successes that their parent companies in Mexico have reaped. It is a medium-term objective, that of promotion, but it has very solid foundations. The investment is not only intended for transfers, but goes further. The motto ‘Win by serving’ implies investing in sports cities, infrastructure, analytics, science applied to sports… Economically detonates the region in which money is injected. A legacy is left and communities are transformed.
It happened in Torreón, the jewel in the crown. Its sports city, integrated with the Santos Laguna stadium, is of the highest level. It has a residence in which 40 players live and in total there are 215 boys in the inferiors. A similar complex is being built in Guadalajara, although not with the stadium attached, which will trigger the growth of the many young people who they leave Atlas, the Academy. The idea is to project all this latest generation methodology to Mareo.
With the clear reference of City Group or Red Bull Group, the Mexicans have entered in a big way in a market, the European, very difficult to conquer. The case of Salzburg and Leipzig, both playing Champions, is extreme; also that of City, capable of having the Premier League champion and many others around the world that replicate its sports and business model. Sporting, like Oviedo, serve as a test bench. Over time there will be more investments, do not hide in recognizing it. The model is good. Works. It only remains to take it successfully from Mexico to Europe.