Russian tycoon Roman Abramovich and the English team Chelsea FC have found a buyer: a consortium led by the American Todd Boehly, co-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball club, made a colossal offer for some 5.2 billion dollars, an unprecedented figure in transactions of soccer clubs.
“The Chelsea FC can confirm that terms have been agreed” for “a new ownership group, led by Todd Boehly”, to acquire the club for a reported £4.25bn, it said in a statement.
“The sale is expected to be completed by the end of May, subject to all necessary regulatory approvals,” added the London club.
The sale will end a 19-year era Abramovichclose to the Kremlin, who bought the club for 140 million pounds and, at the stroke of a checkbook, has led the London club to win five Premier League titles and two Champions Leagues (2012, 2021).
The tycoon put Chelsea up for sale in March, shortly after coming under British government sanctions following the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, insisting he would not claim repayment of loans made by the club over these 19 years. and that all profits from the operation would go to the victims of the war.
After a long negotiation process with several groups, Boehly and his partners were chosen by the Raine group, a New York bank in charge of the process of selling the latest winners of the Champions League.
In addition to Boehly, the group includes Dodger co-owner Mark Walter, Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss and US investment firm Clearlake Capital.
“Of the total investment made, 2.5 billion pounds ($3 billion) will be used to buy the club’s shares and said proceeds will be deposited in a frozen British bank account with the intention of giving 100% to charitable causes,” he said. Roman Abramovich“Chelsea said.
“The approval of the UK government will be needed to transfer this proceeds from the frozen UK bank account,” it added.
In addition, the new owners commit to an investment of 1,750 million pounds (about 2,200 million dollars) for the benefit of the club.
End of the Abramovich era
“It is not a relief, but it gives us a perspective, now that an agreement has been found,” Chelsea’s German coach, Thomas Tuchel, explained this Saturday to the microphone of the Sky Sports network, before the start of the match that his team plays. on this 36th day of Premier League contra Wolverhampton.
“Hopefully this will run its course as long as possible so we can act without penalties. So it’s good news,” added the coach.
The officialization of the purchase of Chelsea is a ball of oxygen for the English formation, concerned about the time it took to finalize the sale. Waiting for his future to be clarified, the London club was forced to operate with a special government license after Abramovich was sanctioned by the United Kingdom and the European Union for his links with the Russian president, Vladimir Putin.
The situation raised fears about the future of the club if it was not sold by May 31, when the special license from the British government expires.
According to its terms, Chelsea could not extend contracts to its current players or make new signings.
These extra-sports problems seem to have had an impact on the pitch. The club was eliminated in the quarterfinals of the Champions against Real Madrid and suffered unexpected setbacks in the Premier where they still have to secure their place in the top four.
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