Chelsea sale: What we know about the interested parties

Chelsea are currently experiencing one of the most challenging periods in their recent history after the club was put up for sale.

Earlier in March, club owner Roman Abramovich was the subject of sanctions by the UK government. They said, as reported by BBC News, that the Russian is “one of the few oligarchs from the 1990s to maintain prominence under [Russian president, Vladimir] Putin”.

Ever since then, Chelsea have been on the market in search of new ownership.

The deadline for prospective buyers to submit their bids for the club was on Friday 18 March. US merchant bank, the Raine Group, are in charge of sifting through the bids.

The bank expects to shortlist two or three favourites as early as this week. According to reports, those that made weak offers for the club are expected to be told late on Monday that they have been rejected.

Here is what we know about the key interested parties.

Nick Candy’s ‘Blue Football’ Consortium

British businessman – and lifelong Chelsea fan – Nick Candy has revealed he launched a bid ahead of Friday’s deadline.

Candy intends to take over his boyhood club and give the fans their own say. He is in a consortium alongside South Korean firm C&P Sports Group,

The 49-year-old has proposed that fans acquire a share of the economic and voting rights in the club, as per Daily Mail. He wants an advisory board at the club of fan representatives to engage on issues of supporter interest.

One of the things that undoubtedly made Chelsea so successful under Abramovich was how much passion the Russian billionaire had for the club. In addition, it was his ability to spend big. That is often not the case for other club owners.

With Abramovich, it was his desire for the Blues to win trophies that ultimately led to Chelsea competing on several fronts. Candy is a lifelong fan. Therefore, it will be interesting to see whether he holds the same passion for winning trophies.

The businessman has also increased his bid to “significantly over” £2 billion. That could put him in pole position.

Todd Boehly’s consortium

Todd Boehly is one of the favourites to take over Abramovich and his bid is backed by Goldman Sachs. He is part-owner of the LA Dodgers.

Sky Sports report that the powerful Wall Street investment bank are involved in helping Boehly take over the west London club.

One thing that we know for certain is that Chelsea are eager to complete the sale as quickly as possible. That is so that they can continue making money again. Boehly has promised a swift and quick procedure. According to the Daily Telegraph, the American and his consortium have given “proof” that the takeover could be completed in time for Chelsea’s next Premier League game against Brentford on 2 April.

The Ricketts family

Chelsea sale Tom Ricketts
Image Credit: Getty

The Ricketts family have also submitted a bid for the club. They own the American baseball team Chicago Cubs.

The Daily Mirror, however, reports that Chelsea players are “uncomfortable” with the prospect of the family taking over. Fans have also spoken out with their concerns.

That is because of emails sent by Joe Ricketts that were leaked in 2019. The emails contained anti-Islam rhetoric and racist comments, as reported by The Independent.

Read: Joe Ricketts: Potential Chelsea owner’s anti-Muslim comments shock Demba Ba

One of the emails, published by Splinter News, read: “I think Islam is a cult and not a religion. Christianity and Judaism are based on love whereas Islam is based on ‘kill the infidel’ a thing of evil.”

Chelsea sale – Sir Martin Broughton and Lord Sebastian Coe team up

British businessman Sir Martin Broughton has teamed up with the president of World Athletics, Lord Sebastian Coe.

Much like Nick Candy, both men are Chelsea season ticket holders. They have pledged to invest in players and facilities if successful.

They have also said the following about their bid: “All cash proceeds from the sale are delivered without delay to the victims of the ongoing humanitarian crisis created by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.”

Broughton went on to tell Sky Sports about fan involvement:

“I’ve been a Chelsea fan since 1955. I’ve been down there for 67 years. I am a fan. I think it’s important that we have a great deal of fan involvement in this.”

However, there has been some concern over the bid. The Telegraph report the takeover could bee in doubt if it emerges that Crystal Palace shareholders Joshua Harris and David Blitzer are financing the bid. Premier League rules over dual ownership would reportedly stop them from investing heavily in a second club.

Featured Image Credit: Getty