GdS: How RedBird brought Toulouse back to Ligue 1 in two years with just €30m

By Isak Möller -

When Toulouse were relegated from the op flight in France two years ago, RedBird Capital stepped in. The same firm that are in talks with Elliott Management over buying AC Milan, with a clear plan in mind. 

The American-based firm has put €1.3bn on the table and that figure could rise to €1.8bn in the future, as per various reports. Talks with Elliott Management are thus advanced and there is confidence that a deal can be closed.

Gazzetta Dello Sport have decided to take a look at RedBird’s venture at Toulouse, as the club earned promotion to Ligue 1 this season. Six players in the top XI, the best manager, top goalscorer and top assist man crowned Toulouse’s success.

In short, this season was a masterpiece from the French side who are back in the top flight after just two years. RedBird bought the club for a mere €20m back in 2020 and promised to bring the back to Ligue 1, which they have now delivered on.

Furthermore, they have done it with a budget of less than €30m, focusing on their own academy and also advanced data analytics. Ten criteria were identified from the first season, when they were knocked out in the play-offs, and predicted them to remain in the top two along with Ajaccio. That ended up being the case.

Gerry Cardinale, the founder and CEO of RedBird, appointed the experienced Damien Comolli as the president of the club, and the latter appointed Philippe Montanier in 2021. Working closely with data analytics, great success has been achieved.

RedBird will now sanction a budget of €40m and the goal is to earn safety rather comfortably in the first season and then fight for the top six in the second season. However, always with the data to guide them.

Tags AC Milan RedBird Capital Toulouse


  1. The top flight ain’t like the 2nd tier league, top flight need money to be competitive, data alone ain’t bring us champions League trophy, so what im saying is, this red bird won’t make us champions League contender

    1. “top flight need money to be competitive”

      Like e.g. Atalanta, right? It’s not the sum of money but how you spend it.

      1. so where is atalanta right now…..offcourse you are right we have to keep the balance pick the bits and spend money as well…..why we keep loosing players because we don’t show our ambitious side of investment in transfer market…..the job done by Maldini and massara is commendable but plz they should be helped a bit as well…..

  2. Hahahha red bird and toulouse…data only won’t help sir its investment that would…what ever ppl or writers say this deal won’t even let us sign any marquee signing of 50m plus……two investment firms both Americans…it will be a miracle to hold players with no right investment…we need to show the world we can afford to buy to players of high caliber…

  3. CAN YOU STOP PUSHING REDBIRD… Like you are a new outlet, you must investigate instead of saying oh something good of 500 bad red flags. They will ruin Milan if they buy it.

  4. Nice article, show what smart investments can do, anyone still not sure about these guys should look into them a bit more, not only are they global leaders in sporting analytics buy they have immense connections in the sports media and marketing, they will help make Milan a global brand and this will bring in the big money and make us competitive in europe again.

  5. Are u gonna build this into a wealthy club by selling good players away, etc and buy cheap potential players and struggling at the top flight without single F trophy. So what’s the point afterall, is it like players breed farmville.

    1. In under 3 seasons Elliot has turned us around from a mid table team with terrible finances, massive debts, no profits, no CL football for about 10 seasons straight all because of an owner that threw money around without having a clue about football to pretty much league champions with smart choices, You guys want to go back to that thinking we will be the next psg, man city, news flash it wont happen, if Investcorp were going to be the owner doing that then answer me this :

      How come they cant afford to match or better what this Redbird fund is offering?

      and don’t give me the crap about how they don’t want to get into a bidding war, they are supposed to have bottomless pockets and money is not an issue to them? if that is true then let them show this and put their money where their mouth is.

      I will choose the people who are making smart educated choices over a new Li Yonghong

      1. Then don’t cry over if those smart choices don’t be too smart in the end…..just like it needs two to clap marquee signings and potential talents both makes it possible for team to succeed. And your question why price wasn’t raised with all due respect they offered the same as red bird and once you set the deal, you work on payment parameter which was eventually agreed. The transfer budget was set and Stadium acquisition was agreed either by buying San siro or going for new one exclusively milan….that’s why you got that tweet from investcorp chairman…..businessmen don’t disclose unless they are dead sure the deal is wrapped up……now watch this out next big thing in seria a will be inter taken over by a Saudi influential person…this is coming from a die hard rossoneri fan

        1. With due respect you and I don’t know what they offered, we don’t know what transfer budget they had and we don’t know if they wanted to build 1 stadium just for Milan, because you are right, anyone involved in this deal has always said “no comment” the only ones talking about transfers and stadiums only for Milan are the media, the same media that did not know Elliot were even talking to anyone about the clubs sale for over 2 weeks until the French found out by accident. The media got you all hyped up about being the next psg and now you are all crying when you find out it’s not true. Wait until the season is over then see what happens, play fm2022 or FIFA to get your dream team fix.

          1. Sir it all churned out at Dubai expo long before gazidis came there. I am a Middle Eastern citizen this thing was all over the town who is investing and what ambitious plans they had…corporate dinner business deals the signs were all there to see…investcorp already worked about dont ask me how did I know you dont need a brain of einstein to work out if you got right connections to find out…..after Newcastle debacle the best thing they would come up with investing through investcorp and well don’t be surprised if inter gets to eat that pie….though I am a die hard rossoneri

  6. I doubt Redbird will take Milan to where we supporters want me Milan to be. Imagine how long it will take for Milan to build a squad like Man City. If u develop and sell players and not wanting to pay players the salaries they deserve. I am not keen on this take over. We were looking forward to getting a striker like Darwin Nunez, this will all change. I trust Maldini and Massara but at times you need to lossen the purse. I am sure half of the teams in Serie A uses data analysis, and those teams q how do they perform in the Champions League, so data analytics and Harvard Professors will not win us Champions League.

  7. If they run it like will be like buying Ferrari and driving it as disrespect but what I mean is milan should be managed like milan not factory that produces players and sell them

  8. Data are good , but winning champion league are very different case with toulose promoted to ligue one. You cannot expect win champion league with budget transfer 30-50m euro and pay your player with salary 2-4m euro nett/season. Liverpool success with tight budget because their coach Juergen Klopp not because American owner data

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