Nigerian entrepreneur and sports enthusiast, Mrs. Nneka Dorothy Ede has made history as the first African woman to own a football club in Europe after acquiring 108-year old Portuguese club, Lusitano Ginásio Clube, Futebol, SAD.
A statement from the club said: “After months of negotiations with different entities, an agreement has been reached with Mrs. Nneka Ede, a sports enthusiast and entrepreneur from Nigeria, a country filled with people as passionate and fiery about football as us and which incidentally share the same green and white in their flags, towards the transfer of the ownership of the SAD to the latter that will help us in our mission to take Lusitano to the next level.”
New owner Mrs. Ede said “I am excited about this opportunity and I hope that this new chapter will deepen the already great sporting relations between Nigeria and Portugal, continue with the rich history of Lusitano club and provide a pathway for young talent to develop and shine through.”
Founded November 11, 1911 by a group of high school and commercial school youngsters as Lusitano Academico, it subsequently became Lusitano Futebol and finally Lusitano Ginásio Clube in 1925. On 14 July 2016, the Lusitano Ginásio Clube, Futebol SAD (Sports Company) was created and the club transferred the management of professional senior football rights to this newly created entity.
Commonly known as Lusitano de Évora (abbrev. Lusit. Évora), the club currently competes in the third tier of Portuguese football. It was however a major force in Portuguese football in the 1950s and 1960s when the club competed for 14 consecutive seasons in the Primeira Divisão (first division or tier 1) earning an honorable 5th place in 1956/57, and reaching the semi-finals of the Taça de Portugal twice.