They have been described as the poor relations of West Midlands football.
But two wealthy backers of Walsall FC have appeared on a rich list of the game’s wealthiest 100 personalities.
Yet no-one from Carling Cup holders Birmingham City or Premiership clubs West Bromwich Albion and Wolves has made it into the chart, although Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner is placed 18th, with a personal fortune of £630 million.
One of the Walsall FC tycoons is property developer Peter Gilman, ranked 86th with a fortune of £25 million. He is joined by Black Country publishers the Graham family who are worth £70 million, placing them at 57th.
The rich list of players, shareholders and directors was revealed by top football magazine, FourFourTwo.
While no current Blues figures make the line-up, former chairman David Sullivan, now at the helm of Championship high-fliers West Ham United, is listed in 25th place, with a reported £400 million in assets.
The appearance of the Saddlers’ pair is surprising considering fans’ apparent dissatisfaction and their frequent claims of a lack of boardroom investment in the club.
Board member Peter Gilman is one of Yorkshire’s top property developers, who helped develop the Thorpe Park business centre outside Leeds.
In April 2005 he teamed up with Kevin McCabe to buy Severn Trent Water out of its 51 per cent Thorpe Park stake, in a £30 million deal.
A year and a half later, Gilman sold his then 40 per cent stake to McCabe, a former Sheffield United board member.
The Graham family owns the Claverley group of local newspapers, stretching from Wolverhampton to mid-Wales. The group, owned by Douglas Graham and family, has a small stake in Walsall.