Qatar target Premier League investment amid Tottenham denials

Qatar target Premier League investment amid Tottenham denials

Qatar is aiming to expand its sports portfolio by buying a minority stake in a Premier League club, with Tottenham thought to be the likeliest target.

Spurs deny that chairman Daniel Levy met last week with Nasser Al-Khelaifi, the chairman of Paris Saint-Germain and president of Qatar Sports Investments (QSI), despite reports of a mutually-agreed meeting at a London hotel.

Sources close to Levy said the pair have been friends for years and meet regularly, particularly when Al-Khelaifi is in London. They met at a board meeting of the European Club Association — of which Al-Khelaifi is head and Spurs a member — in Doha last month.

Spurs also insisted this morning that there are no discussions, exploratory or otherwise, with QSI over a minority stake in the club, despite the Qataris' plans for an ambitious post-World Cup expansion of its portfolio.

Reports claim a 25 per cent stake in Spurs could be sold for £1billion (Getty Images)
Reports claim a 25 per cent stake in Spurs could be sold for £1billion (Getty Images)

As well as PSG, QSI owns a 22 per cent stake in Portuguese club SC Braga — bought for about £79.3million last October — and is promoting the burgeoning sport of padel tennis.

Manchester United and Liverpool are both for sale, although Spurs are understood to be considered a more realistic option for QSI, which is not restricting its plans to English football and is said to be eyeing opportunities around the world.

Last year, billionaire Daniel Kretinsky bought a 27 per cent stake in West Ham, with David Sullivan and the late David Gold remaining as co-chairmen, and a similar arrangement may appeal to Levy and majority shareholder, Joe Lewis.

Spurs are facing an ongoing challenge to satisfy Antonio Conte's demands and compete in the transfer market, and owners ENIC injected £150m into the club over the summer. That figure is a fraction of what Levy would be able to demand for a minority stake.

While Kretinsky is widely expected to eventually take a majority control of the Hammers, QSI is exploring only minority deals, because it has no plans to sell PSG and UEFA rules forbid owners from having a majority holding in clubs which could meet in European competition.