Millionaire Sunderland Owner Running For Presidency

Story By: Alex Cope Sub-Editor: Lee Bullen, Agency: Golder’s News & Sport Ltd.

Picture Credits: Golders/@JuanSartoriUY & Golders/@comunicacionJS & Golders/@juansartoriuy

The millionaire co-owner of Sunderland has announced he is set to run as a candidate for the presidency of Uruguay in a move compared with Donald Trump.

Businessman Juan Sartori surprised many in Uruguay by announcing his pre-candidacy to run for president for the centre-right Partido Nacional (National Party) in the upcoming elections.

The 37-year-old Sunderland owner, who is married to Ekaterina Rybolovleva, daughter of Monaco owner and Russian magnate Dmitri Rybolovlev, announced his candidacy with a speech at the Metro de Montevideo theatre in the Uruguayan capital.

He said his dream is to “contribute to making Uruguay bigger”, adding “you have to have courage” to make your dreams come true.

Sartori, who owns large amounts of land in Uruguay but has not lived in the country for 20 years, said he had “faced up to problems to resolve them” his whole life, adding he “ takes on challenges to overcome them”.

The businessman’s entry into the political scene has been compared in local media to that of Donald Trump in the United States and Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil as he is a political outsider.

He said : “I have learnt that the good arithmetic in politics is about adding up and not subtracting. About multiplying and not dividing. About listening and not only speaking. About understanding the other person, about understanding what is happening and about respecting everybody.” 

Sarroti bought a 20 percent stake in Sunderland this summer and works with co-owner Stewart Donald in the running of the club.

He is running to be the Partido Nacional candidate, who will be announced in June 2019 before the elections in October.

The governing central-left Frente Amplio (Broad Front) party are the favourites to maintain power in next year’s elections in Uruguay.