A consortium led by Papa Yusupha Njie, Chairman of the Unique Group of Companies and Saul Frazer the Proprietor of Global Properties, have completed the full takeover of PSV Wellingara Football Club. The new owners have since renamed it Unique Global Football Club.
The agreement is seen as a paradigm shift marking a new beginning in football investment in The Gambia with it being the first private-sector led purchase of a football club in the country. The new owners are committed to accelerating the sustainable growth and development of the club with the focus on both the first team and the academy and planned investments in sports infrastructure beyond the football club.
PSV Wellingara was established in 2006 as a Nawettan team in Wellingara village of the West Coast Region and its original name was Toubabo FC, named after former Gambia captain Mustapha Toubabo Jarju. They successfully gained promotion to the second division in 2015 and renamed the Club PSV Wellingara. It has since secured two separate promotions to the top flight of Gambian football, most recently being just last season, but on both occasions got relegated to the second tier.
Commenting on the takeover, Mr. Njie said they are absolutely delighted to acquire the full ownership of Unique Global FC. “I’ve always been interested in diversifying our investments into sports and this was a great opportunity. The Gambia has a pool of talented footballers with great potential and if the right structures are put in place by the clubs, we see a great future for the move to a professional league allowing Gambian teams to have the financial capability to participate in the CAF club tournaments which we are currently not doing. We have seen the remarkable strides made by Gambian football over the last few years and our qualification to a second straight African Cup of Nations and being in a world cup qualifier group proper for the first time in our history, is a true testament to that,” Mr. Njie, who doubles as the Chairman of Access Bank Gambia and Cote d’Ivoire’s Honorary Consul to The Gambia commented.
Co-owner Saul Frazer was equally elated that they took the calculated decision to invest in Unique Global Football Club. “We looked at a couple of clubs in The Gambia and with the good history that PSV Wellingara had and having just got relegated from the first division, we decided that the club had a lot of potential that we could tap from. With sensible, measured and sustainable investment, we can establish Unique Global FC as one of the best football clubs in the sub region and develop good players for the international football market. The team has a great history, and we are bringing on board people who will play a very important role in the sustainable growth and development of the Club. We are looking at developing a standard training facility for our short-term needs and our long-term goals are to build a first privately owned modern state-of-the-art multisport facility in the Gambia creating a great platform to support our young people and provide employment opportunities beyond the football field.”
Honourable Abdoulie Ceesay, member of Parliament for Old Yundum and founder President of the Club commented: “As former owners, we have done our best, but we have come to the decision that for the club to reach its maximum potential, it requires more investment. We have had several offers, but we turned all of them down. We’re satisfied that the new owners are the kind of people we trust to take the club forward.”