Green light for the sale of Chelsea. The British sports minister, Nadine Dorries, confirmed on Wednesday that the English government has issued a permit to go ahead with the change of ownership of the English team. Until now the owner of the London club, Russian tycoon Roman Abramovich, is subject to sanctions by the British government due to his relationship with President Vladimir Putin, so he put the club up for sale in early March. The oligarch then assured that he would not claim the investment he has made in Stamford Bridge since he bought the club in 2003 for some 160 million euros. Since then, the economic injection in the entity blue It has been 1,750 million euros from his own pocket, in a period of 19 years in which the team has won five Premier titles and two Champions.
“We are convinced that the proceeds from the sale of Chelsea will not benefit Abramovich or any other sanctioned individuals,” Dorries explained. “Given the sanctions we imposed on people linked to Putin and the bloody invasion of Ukraine, the club’s long-term future can only be secured under new ownership.”
This Tuesday, the Boehly-Clearlake consortium, which agreed the terms to acquire Chelsea for 4,250 million pounds, about 5,000 million euros (the highest investment by a club in the history of football), passed the examination of owners and managers of the Premier League.
The new owner of Chelsea will be the American businessman Todd Boehly, 46 years old and in charge of 80 companies: insurance, financial services, hotels such as The Beverly Hilton and the Waldorf Astoria in Beverly Hills; real estate, the cultural festival SXSW (South by Southwest), the independent film production company A24, specialized magazines The Hollywood Reporter, Rolling Stone and Billboard. Boehly’s investment fund also bought at the end of last year for 500 million dollars, together with Sony, the musical catalog of Bruce Springsteen and The Killers.
On the sporting front, Chelsea, a club with 117 years of history and current champion of the Champions League (Liverpool and Madrid will play this season’s final this Saturday), now joins the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Los Angeles Lakers. The baseball team, one of the most important in the United States, was bought in 2012 for 2,000 million dollars. Since then, the team has flourished in the hands of the businessman, who personally owns 20% (the fund is owned by another 7%). And in June of last year they bought 27% of the Lakers, a percentage put up for sale by the controversial conservative businessman Phil Anschutz. The Buss family, however, continues to control the majority of the team led on the track by Lebron James.
Boehly’s landing at Stamford Bridge reinforces the presence of the Americans in the Premier League. Eight teams are already controlled by American companies, including the Glazer family’s Manchester United, Stan Kroenke’s Arsenal and Fenway Sports Group’s Liverpool (owners of the Boston Red Sox).