Spanish international and Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin has invested in League 2 side Forest Green Rovers, becoming the club’s second-largest shareholder.
Forest Green has been highly recognised for its environmentally sustainable approach with the fully vegan side becoming the world’s first carbon-neutral sports club in 2017.
Bellerin’s new role with Forest Green will see the footballer collaborate with the club’s chairman, Dale Vince, on promoting an environmental message to the footballing world, educating fans, clubs and leagues.
Bellerin stated: “I was really excited when I first discovered the opportunity to get involved at Forest Green Rovers – and the brilliant work the club is already doing. It’s important that I invest in things I am passionate about – and I’m excited to help push football into having a sustainable future.
“Forest Green Rovers prove to clubs who say ‘they don’t have resources to be sustainable’ – that it is possible. With the new stadium, being carbon neutral and vegan the club is doing some mind-blowing work. People have a universal love of football, so there’s no better industry to promote sustainability – and what we can do as football supporters to be more environmentally conscious.”
It has been reported that despite being the second largest shareholder, the 25-year-old is not above the stake threshold in which a conflict of interest is occurring.
Forest Green Rovers Chairman Dale Vince commented: “I like Hector’s approach, his personal journey and the things he’s trying to do – they make sense. I’m looking forward to working with him on our projects at FGR and this wider agenda we have a shared interest in.”
This isn’t the first time Bellerin has made the news for promoting an environmental message with the defender making a pledge ahead of the Premier leagues restart in June that saw the player plant 3,000 trees for every Arsenal victory.