Charlton Athletic: Roland Duchatelet agrees sale to East Street Investments

General view at The Valley
Roland Duchatelet had been in control at The Valley since 2014

Championship side Charlton Athletic have been taken over by East Street Investments, subject to approval from the English Football League.

They have agreed to buy Charlton from Roland Duchatelet, who had been trying to sell the club since the end of 2017.

Tahnoon Nimer and Jonathan Heller - chairman and CEO of Abu Dhabi Business Development - join as directors, with Matt Southall becoming club chairman.

Charlton fans had held a series of protests against Belgian Duchatelet.

In March the EFL board rejected his demands for the league to acquire the club, because of "a significant conflict of interest".

"We are privileged to take ownership of such an historic club and it is incredibly exciting to be part of the process of building a fresh future for the fans, loyal club staff and players of Charlton Athletic," said Southall.

"Their [the fans'] support throughout some difficult times, both recently and in the past, has been inspirational and we intend to build on that loyalty."

Abu Dhabi Business Development is the private office of his Highness Sheikh Saeed Bin Tahnoun Bin Mohammed Al Nahyan.

Former football agent Southall said the club is in "excellent hands" with manager Lee Bowyer, who got the Addicks promoted from League One last season.

East Street Investments must pass the EFL's owners' and directors' test before completing the takeover.

Animosity between supporters and Duchatelet

Charlton fans protest
Charlton fans held several protests against owner Roland Duchatalet in recent seasons

Duchatelet took control of the Addicks in 2014, adding them to a network of clubs around Europe, which included sides in Belgium, Germany, Hungary and Spain.

However, a section of supporters became disillusioned with how he and former chief executive Katrien Meire were running the club and formed a coalition group called Campaign Against Roland Duchatelet (CARD), urging the 73-year-old to sell.

CARD questioned Duchatelet's long-term strategy for Charlton, the club's recruitment strategy and the high turnover of managers, with five managerial changes made during his first two years of ownership.

A series of protests were held at matches during the 2015-16 season as Charlton were relegated from the Championship, with Duchatelet saying some supporters "want the club to fail" and blaming them for vandalising several of his properties in his homeland.

Charlton and Coventry fans threw hundreds of plastic pigs on the pitch in a joint protest at The Valley in October 2016, with employees last year claiming they were owed bonuses by the club.

In February, Duchatelet described the Championship as becoming renowned for being "the biggest financial graveyard or black hole in football".

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