By Antonio Torres del Cerro

Saint-Denis, France

The club has not played in Ligue Un for almost half a century, but it still has an enviable commercial appeal. Despite languishing in the third division, Red Star FC in Saint-Ouen is a magnet for sponsorships and investors. The proof: the American fund 777 has just bought it ahead of Gerard Pique's Kosmos.

Seen as the antithesis of the multimillionaire Paris Saint-Germain (PSG), the popular club from the suburbs of Paris boasts a genuine 'charme' due to its proletarian and left-wing roots, a kind of Parisian Rayo Vallecano (Madrid) or St. Pauli (Hamburg).

777 Partners, the same fund that controls 10% of Sevilla and which bought Serie A team Genoa and Brazilian side Vasco de Gama, has just acquired the Saint-Ouen-based club that was founded in 1897 by Jules Rimet – the former Fifa president who was the driving force behind the first ever World Cup.

The sale has been a tense affair, with Red Star fans firmly opposed to the takeover.