Botafogo will train at Espaço Lonier until the end of the year, but no destination has yet been set for 2023. Looking for a new training center for the club, John Textor has negotiated with the Moreira Salles brothers for to definitely claim the area and look for other options.
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As for Lonier, the terms of the table are to transfer one percent from Sociedade Anônima do Futebol alvinegra in exchange for space. Or that the businessman will claim the debt that belongs to the club. The decision depends on Textor, who has not yet expressed a stance on the matter.
At the time of the acquisition, in 2017, João and Walter Moreira Salles lent almost R $ 30 million to the club to buy the property, a contract not honored by the association. With no money to pay the debt or even to do the work, the club handed over control to the brothers, presenting a new project in 2021.
Botafogo players train at Espaço Lonier – Photo: Vitor Silva/Botafogo
In addition to this amount, Botafogo has another R $ 20 million in family debt, which also helps with loans for hire and working capital in more difficult times. The figures are in the latest financial statement released by the club. Fans of Botafogo, the Moreira Salles sisters also joined in starting the journey towards the club-company by funding an Ernst & Young study in 2019.
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It’s not the only way for Botafogo football to get out, in Textor’s view. The businessman will be building a new CT, but he has yet to hit the spot and has also visited the spaces with a look at the upcoming stadium for the club.
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John Textor visits Lonier, in January – Photo: Vítor Silva/Botafogo
Depends on the trade, but Lonier is high on the mark. That’s why the club made improvements and gave preference to space instead of Nilton Santos stadium. And many more renovations are expected, such as camps, academies and other facilities, to improve the work structure. Currently, there is no structural effect, which occurs only after agreement between the parties.
Meanwhile, the board is looking for options that require little preparation and service for the short term, even if only temporarily. The promise is to have a structured place to house the main team next season. In recent months, Bota has been in talks with Zico’s CFZ, but the conversation hasn’t continued. For the base, the club has a contract with Cefat, in Niterói.
For now, Botafogo continues to use Lonier temporarily, due to good relations with the Moreira Salles brothers. If the stay is permanent, the idea is to have a house that is combined with the main group and the base divisions, with more farms and a general structural change.
Walter Moreira Salles at a meeting about CT, September 2021 – Photo: Reproduction
In the Moreira Salles project, the idea is different. The brothers also saw a complete change in the area, but the priority was training. The intention is to make Lonier CT at Botafogo base, including building a school to give full attention to the children.
This is also one of the points discussed. Currently, João and Walter Moreira Salles are active in the project for the club’s new training center. Their goal is to maintain their position by joining the alvinegra company.
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