Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin has become Forest Green Rovers’ second-largest shareholder, joining the club on its path to creating a sustainable future.

There’s more to Hector Bellerin than his wild wardrobe and fashion tastes. The Spaniard has also been vocal in his support and passion for conservation over the years, and his ambition to tackle climate change within society saw him pledge to plant 3,000 trees in the Amazon for every Arsenal victory during ‘project restart’. With additional support, that number grew to over 50,000 trees planted (Arsenal have been in good form of late, but not that good). And now the next Nellerin is taking the next step in his journey, after it was announced that he has become Forest Green Rovers’ second-largest shareholder.

Speaking on joining the club’s ‘green revolution’, Bellerin said: “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.

I became a vegan around three years ago and at first, I just wanted to try it and detox my body. Initially, I thought I’d eat meat as a ‘treat’ – but, being vegan just worked for me. After a month of being vegan, I felt stronger – and I didn’t struggle with ankle injuries anymore. I began to feel more energetic on the pitch – and I began to notice a real difference.

FGR Chairman Dale Vince said: “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.

Interesting times ahead for both Bellerin and FGR...