French soccer powerhouse Bordeaux provisionally relegated

PARIS (AP) — French soccer club Bordeaux has been provisionally relegated to the second division after its major shareholder decided to withdraw.

The club said it will appeal the decision after it presented to the league’s financial watchdog a project by businessman Gerard Lopez to take over.

Bordeaux said it has “good hopes” the relegation will be canceled once the project is finalized.

The club placed itself under the protection of the city’s commercial court in April after the club’s American-based owner King Street withdrew its financial support.

King Street took over the southwestern club in December 2019.

French soccer has been hit hard by the collapse of a lucrative TV deal with broadcaster Mediapro and starved of income due to empty stadiums during the coronavirus pandemic.

Bordeaux was a standout club in the 1980s, winning four French titles, and won the last of its six in 2009.

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