Sport Football Roman Abramovich completes sale of Chelsea

Roman Abramovich completes sale of Chelsea

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Roman Abramovich has completed the sale of Premier League football club Chelsea and related companies to an investment group led by American Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital, ending a three-month process to sell the club.

The consortium, which won the bid to acquire the London side earlier this month, received approval from the league and the British government last week for the sale to go ahead.

A final agreement was reached on Saturday and announced Monday.

Russian owner Mr Abramovich put the club up for sale in early March following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the British government’s sanctioning of him.

“In selling the club, Mr Abramovich stipulated that the new owner must be a good steward of the club, the net proceeds of the sale must be donated to charity, and that he would not seek the repayment of loans made to affiliates of the club,” Chelsea said in a statement.

The sale also needed the green light from the Portuguese government after Mr Abramovich became a citizen of the country last year.

Chelsea had been operating under a special licence issued by the British government since Ms Abramovich’s assets were frozen in March. It was set to expire on Tuesday.

Chelsea said it had received more than 250 inquiries from proposed purchasers, adding that 32 confidentiality agreements had been reached with interested parties.

The club said Mr Boehly and Clearlake would share joint control and equal governance of the club. Mr Boehly, a part-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, will be chairman of the holding company.

“We are honoured to become the new custodians of Chelsea Football Club. We’re all in –100% – every minute of every match,” he said.

“Our vision as owners is clear: We want to make the fans proud. Along with our commitment to developing the youth squad and acquiring the best talent, our plan of action is to invest in the club for the long-term and build on Chelsea’s remarkable history of success.

The completion of the sale allows Chelsea to renew transfer activity as well as permit players to sign new contracts, which was prohibited as part of the sanctions imposed.