Chelsea news LIVE: Saudi Media Group not on shortlist of preferred bidders as Blues general licence amended

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While the sale of Chelsea continues the club have been given a boost after the UK government amended its special operating license. The alteration will now allow Chelsea to sell tickets to away matches, cup games and women’s fixtures provided the club does not receive any revenue.

This means Chelsea fans will be able to attend the club’s Champions League quarter-final against Real Madrid and FA Cup semi-final with Crystal Palace at Wembley. The Premier League have said the revenue generated by ticket sales, which would normally have gone to the club, will be donated to war victims in Ukraine.

The government will now also allow Chelsea to receive £30million from its parent company, Fordstam, to allow the club to remain afloat following the sanctioning of owner Roman Abramovich and while the Premier League side is sold.

Raine Group, who are overseeing the process of selling Chelsea, have compiled a shortlist of three preferred offers and although the various interested parties had expected to receive word on whether they had made the cut early this week, the complexity of the deal and information involved has meant more time is needed.

Todd Boehly and Chicago Cubs owners the Ricketts family are among the frontrunners to take over - although a supporters group have expressed their distaste at the Ricketts bid.

Follow all the latest Chelsea takeover news below:

Latest Chelsea takeover news

  • Chelsea fans given ticket boost as club allowed to sell tickets

  • Several interested parties have put forwards bids to Raine Group

  • Next step will be a shortlist of three best bids for Chelsea FC

  • Boston Celtics owner Pagliuca emerges as latest suitor

  • AC Milan owners among minority backers for Nick Candy bid

  • Ricketts family offers to meet Chelsea fans after backlash over bid

  • US-Saudi investor Amr Zedan, owner of the Medina Spirit, makes offer

  • According to Turkish media, Roman Abramovich ‘in talks’ to buy Goztepe

  • Tickets and transfers: What Chelsea can and can’t do following under latest government licence

Chelsea fans call for government to do more over tickets

16:22 , Lawrence Ostlere

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust has questioned why the government won’t allow fans to buy tickets to upcoming home matches.

The government will allow Chelsea to sell some tickets again after easing the terms of its sanctioning license, ensuring the Champions League quarter-final against Real Madrid is not played at an empty Stamford Bridge while denying the west London club the ability to gain financially.

The reigning European and world champions had been banned from selling tickets after owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned for his ties to Russian president Vladimir Putin amid the ongoing invasion on Ukraine.

The oligarch’s assets were frozen but the government has now allowed £30m to be released from Chelsea’s parent company, Fordstam, to provide cash for the club to meet it costs. It equates to about a month’s wages.

Chelsea has been granted a license to continue operating as a club but with strict limitations on its commercial ventures and ability to generate revenue. The updated license allows the sale of tickets to all home fans for the visit of Madrid for the Champions League first leg.

But Chelsea cannot sell new tickets for home Premier League games to its fans — only existing season ticket holders can attend — but away fans can now buy tickets. Chelsea supporters will be able to purchase tickets for away games.

Full story:

Chelsea Supporters’ Trust questions why government won’t let fans buy home tickets

Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

16:16 , Michael Jones

Chelsea suitors’ anxious wait to discover the shortlist of preferred bidders for the Premier League club looked set to drag past Tuesday night.

New York merchant bank the Raine Group will continue compiling the bids to whittle down a shortlist as tight as three offers.

The interested parties bidding for the Blues had initially expected to receive word on their candidacy on either Monday or Tuesday.

But the complex nature of the bids and sheer volume of information left Raine opting to take more time putting together that shortlist.

Chelsea sale: Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

Tickets and transfers: What Chelsea can and can’t do following under latest government licence

16:08 , Michael Jones

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has been sanctioned by the UK government, placing the club’s future in limbo.

The Russian-Israeli billionaire has owned Chelsea since 2003, but he put the club up for sale amid the threat of being sanctioned following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The government’s “oligarch taskforce” has set about targeting those with links to the Kremlin and has sanctioned Abramovich due to his ties with Russian president Vladimir Putin, as well as his stake in the company Evraz PLC, which has been “potentially supplying steel to the Russian military which may have been used in the production of tanks”.

The government’s sanction paper explained: “Abramovich is associated with a person who is/has been involved in destabilising Ukraine & undermining/threatening territorial integrity, sovereignty & independence of Ukraine, namely Vladimir Putin, with whom (he) has had close relationship for decades.”

What does this mean for Chelsea?

What Chelsea can and can’t do under latest government licence

Chelsea supporters call for further changes to license

15:55 , Michael Jones

The leading Chelsea fan group, the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust, has asked the UK Government for clarity as to why they will be unable to buy any more tickets for the club’s remaining Premier League home games.

The Government has amended the club’s operating license to allow fans to buy tickets for cup games, away fixtures and women’s team matches, as long as Chelsea does not receive the revenue.

However, the group said in a statement: “The Trust will urgently seek clarity from the DCMS and Chelsea FC on why members will bot be able to purchase tickets to home Premier League fixtures at Stamford Bridge.

“The sanctions were not brought in to publish supporters - this decision is illogical and unfounded. Further amends must be made.”

The upcoming home match against Brentford is sold out, as tickets went on sale before Roman Abramovich was sanctioned, but the home fixture against Arsenal on April 20 could be played in front of a reduced capacity with season ticket holders only able to attend.

Chelsea fans given ticket update

15:42 , Michael Jones

Chelsea fans will be able to buy tickets for the club’s matches against Real Madrid in the Champions League and Crystal Palace in the FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley, it has been confirmed.

The UK Government has altered the Chelsea’s operating license following a round of talks and fans will also be able to purchase tickets for away games and women’s team fixtures, as long as the proceeds do not go to the club.

However, under the current agreement, Chelsea will be unable to sell any more tickets for the club’s remaining Premier League matches.

The upcoming home match against Brentford is sold out, as tickets went on sale before Roman Abramovich was sanctioned, but the home fixture against Arsenal on April 20 could be played in front of a reduced capacity with season ticket holders only able to attend.

However, a takeover could be completed by the time of the Arsenal match, at which point the club would no longer be required to adhere to the operating license.

New Saudi bidder emerges in Chelsea takeover

15:30 , Michael Jones

Amr Zedan, chairman of the Saudi Arbabian-based Zedan Group, has emerged as the latest public bidder for Chelsea.

Goal report that the investor and horse racing mogul submitted a bid to the Raine Group before Friday’s deadline.

It is understood that like many of the other bidders, Zedan’s bid have since increased their offer after securing additional capital.

Zedan has links with the royal family of Jordan and is married to the country’s princess, Noor Bint Asem.

Thomas Tuchel impressed by players’ reaction to Chelsea off-field uncertainty

15:17 , Michael Jones

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel insisted he has been impressed rather than surprised by the way his players have handled the uncertainly surrounding the club.

The world and European club champions cruised into the FA Cup semi-finals with a 2-0 victory at Championship side Middlesbrough on Saturday evening, their sixth successive win and the fourth since sanctions were imposed upon owner Roman Abramovich.

Asked if he had been surprised, Tuchel said: “They have impressed me – not surprised, but impressed.

Thomas Tuchel impressed by players’ reaction to Chelsea off-field uncertainty

Roman Abramovich makes three takeover demands at Chelsea

15:08 , Michael Jones

Roman Abramovich has reportedly made demands that Chelsea’s new owners meet certain criteria as the Raine Group assess the current offers for the Blues.

Abramovich is keen for the new owners to have ‘a proven track record, a vision for the club and easy access to funds’, according to The Athletic.

That means the Russian oligarch is eager for the best bid to be selected, rather than the highest offer.

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet the Saudi Media group fronted by owner and Blues fan Mohamed Alkhereiji

15:00 , Jack Rathborn

The biggest media company in the Middle East, the Saudi Media group, have also been linked.

Reports suggest they have lodged a £2.7billion bid to win the auction for the club.

Saudi Media’s owner Mohamed Alkhereiji is a Chelsea fan and is apparently leading a private consortium hoping to secure the purchase.

Saudi Arabia’s PIF own Newcastle United after the much-criticised takeover last year with Saudi Media apparently receiving no backing from the state.

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Woody Johnson, New York Jets owner

14:45 , Jack Rathborn

US billionaire Woody Johnson has also been linked.

The US Ambassador to the UK until last year and an associate of former US president Donald Trump is said to be ready offer £2billion for the club.

“What Chelsea need right now is longevity and stability when it comes to a new owner. Woody and his team think they can provide that,” a source close to Johnson has said.

“He’s run the Jets successfully and knows a huge amount about the sports industry. And he’s spent the last four years in London and knows it well.”

Johnson is also owner of NFL franchise, New York Jets.

Chelsea takeover: Empowerment IP among active bidders with offer including option for Blues supporters

14:21 , Jack Rathborn

Empowerment IP, a rights monetisation firm headed by the sports financier Stephen Duval, tabled an improved £3.1bn bid for Chelsea to Raine over the last few days.

Of that total amount, Sky claim £1b is to acquire Chelsea’s share capital, while £2.1b would be ring-fenced for investment in the club’s Stamford Bridge stadium, players and academy.

In an exciting development for Chelsea fans, who have been pushing for more involvement in the future of the club concerning key decisions, the deal is said to include a fan bond to hand supporters no less than 25 per cent of the shares.

Empowerment has close links to the UFC superstar Conor McGregor, who had previously claimed on Twitter he wanted to buy the club.

Chelsea takeover: Boston Celtics owner Pagliuca emerges as latest suitor

14:11 , Jack Rathborn

Stephen Pagliuca has emerged as the latest suitor for Chelsea with the American owning Serie A team Atalanta, a co-owner of the Boston Celtics and co-chairing the buyout firm Bain Capital.

Pagliuca has lodged an offer for the Blues ahead of last week’s deadline, report Sky News.

The 67-year-old submitted a bid before last week’s deadline and if he misses out on the shortlist, he could team up with one of the final consortia.

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Centricus, investment firm with multiple season-ticket holders

13:57 , Jamie Braidwood

Global investment firm Centricus is keen to take over the club and “maintain and support existing management”.

With £29bn in assets and several Chelsea season-ticket holders as part of the group, including Centricus co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and chief executive Garth Ritchie, who will head the bid.

Hedge fund manager Jonathan Lourie of Cheyne Capital and Bob Finch of Talis Capital also make up part of the group, with a statement from the group stating it “will be committed to supporting [Chelsea] and its key stakeholders to ensure its continued success”.

It added: “Our financing for the deal includes funding for the completion of the transaction and funding for working capital required for the day-to-day operations of the CFC Group, funds required to maintain an elite global brand, investment in grassroots and in-community football initiatives such as the Chelsea Academy, the women’s team, the youth development programme and the Chelsea Foundation and strategic real estate investment.

“The intention is to maintain and support existing management on both the business and sporting operations of the CFC Group. We intend to maintain the existing strategy direction.

“Clearly, the CFC Group has been operating in challenging conditions and we appreciate the importance for the CFC Group, the fans and other key stakeholders of ensuring a smooth and stable ownership transition.”

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Nick Candy, property developer and season ticket holder

13:38 , Jamie Braidwood

Property developer Nick Candy initially assembled a bid worth £2.5bn to buy Chelsea, but over the last weekend an improved offer arrived with a large Korean financial institution joining his consortium.

The elder Candy brother is attempting to form a consortium to buy the club, who he supports, with the bid aimed at including plans to redevelop Stamford Bridge.

“Nick Candy is actively exploring a number of options for a potential bid for Chelsea Football Club,” a spokesperson for Candy said in a statement to Sportsmail. “Any bid would be made in conjunction with another party (or consortium) and we have serious interest from several international partners.”

“Mr Candy has a huge affinity with Chelsea. His father was asked to play for the club and he has been watching matches at Stamford Bridge since the age of four. The club deserves a world class stadium and infrastructure and Mr Candy’s unique expertise and background in real estate would be a hugely valuable asset to delivering this vision.”

Alongside brother Christian, Candy formed property development company Candy & Candy in 1999.

The firm has since been involved in a number of high-profile developments in London, including luxury residential and retail complex One Hyde Park in Knightsbridge.

Nick Candy took over sole ownership of the siblings’ business, renamed Candy Property, in 2018 and has diversified his portfolio through investment arm Candy Ventures.

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Todd Boehly, part-ownerer of Los Angeles Dodgers

13:19 , Jamie Braidwood

A potential leader of that consortium is reportedly Todd Boehly. The American has courted Chelsea before - in 2019, he had a $3 billion (£2.24 billion) offer turned down by Abramovich as he looked to add the Premier League club to a sporting portfolio already including part-ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team and Los Angeles Sparks basketball franchise.

Boehly added a stake in the LA Lakers last year and is an owner of fantasy sports behemoth DraftKings. He is the founder of private investment firm Eldridge Partners, which is involved in a broad range of industries.

“Football’s the biggest sport in the world, the passion the fans have for the sport and the teams is unparalleled,” Boehly told Bloomberg in 2019 of his interest in buying Chelsea.

“So what you are trying to build with these teams, you are really trying to a) win and b) be part of the community.

“The opportunity we had with the Dodgers was really about part-ownership with Los Angeles, how are we going to win, how are we going to drive championships and how are we going to build passion. If you look at what the Premier League offers, it’s all of those things.

“It’s the highest quality play, it’s the best players, and you also have a media market that’s just really developing.”

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Hansjorg Wyss, Swiss billionaire who made his fortune with medical device manufacturer

13:00 , Jamie Braidwood

Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss has already confirmed that he has been offered the chance to buy Chelsea.

Wyss, 86, made his fortune as the founder and president of Synthes USA, a medical device manufacturer. The company was sold to pharmaceutical giants Johnson & Johnson for $19.7 billion in 2012.

The octogenarian lives in Wyoming and is a prominent supporter and financial backer of environmental causes and progressive politics.

He told Swiss outlet Blick that he would have to join with others in a consortium to buy the club.

“I have to wait four to five days now. Abramovich is currently asking far too much,” Wyss explained. “You know, Chelsea owe him £2billion [it is £1.5billion]. But Chelsea has no money. That means: those who buy Chelsea should compensate Abramovich.

“As of today, we don’t know the exact selling price. I can well imagine starting at Chelsea with partners. But I have to examine the general conditions first. But what I can already say: I’m definitely not doing something like this alone.

“If I buy Chelsea, then with a consortium consisting of six to seven investors.”

Tickets and transfers: What Chelsea can and can’t do following Roman Abramovich sanctions

12:25 , Jamie Braidwood

The updated license allows the sale of tickets to all home for the visit of Madrid for the Champions League first leg. Chelsea cannot sell new tickets for home Premier League games to its fans — only existing season ticket holders can attend — but away fans can now buy tickets. Chelsea supporters will be able to purchase tickets for away games.

The Premier League said it would collect all ticket proceeds that, in agreement with Chelsea, “will be donated to charity to benefit victims of the war in Ukraine.”

The same agreement will see Chelsea fans now able to attend the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley Stadium against Crystal Palace next month.

The government moves also allows tickets to be sold for games involving the Chelsea women’s team again.

What Chelsea can and can’t do under latest government licence

Tickets and transfers: What Chelsea can and can’t do following Roman Abramovich sanctions

12:10 , Jamie Braidwood

The British government will allow Chelsea to sell some tickets again after easing the terms of its sanctioning license, ensuring the Champions League quarterfinal against Real Madrid is not played at an empty Stamford Bridge while denying the west London club the ability to gain financially.

The reigning European and world champions had been banned from selling tickets after owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned for his ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin amid the ongoing invasion on Ukraine.

The oligarch’s assets were frozen but the government has now allowed £30m to be released from Chelsea’s parent company, Fordstam, to provide cash for the club to meet it costs. It equates to about a month’s wages.

Abramovich associate latest to be hit by UK sanctions

11:54 , Jamie Braidwood

Eugene Shvidler, a close associate of Roman Abramovich, has been added to the UK Government’s list of sanctioned individuals following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Foreign Office said Mr Shvidler is a billionaire oil tycoon with close business links to Chelsea owner Abramovich.

Abramovich was added to the UK’s sanctions list on March 10.

Russia sanctions: Who are the latest entities and individuals to be targeted?

Chelsea supporters call for further changes to license

11:18 , Jamie Braidwood

The leading Chelsea fan group, the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust, has asked the UK Government for clarity as to why they will be unable to buy any more tickets for the club’s remaining Premier League home games.

The Government has amended the club’s operating license to allow fans to buy tickets for cup games, away fixtures and women’s team matches, as long as Chelsea does not receive the revenue.

However, the group said in a statement: “The Trust will urgently seek clarity from the DCMS and Chelsea FC on why members will bot be able to purchase tickets to home Premier League fixtures at Stamford Bridge.

“The sanctions were not brought in to publish supporters - this decision is illogical and unfounded. Further amends must be made.”

The upcoming home match against Brentford is sold out, as tickets went on sale before Roman Abramovich was sanctioned, but the home fixture against Arsenal on April 20 could be played in front of a reduced capacity with season ticket holders only able to attend.

Chelsea takeover: New Saudi bidder emerges

10:50 , Jamie Braidwood

Amr Zedan, chairman of the Saudi Arbabian-based Zedan Group, has emerged as the latest public bidder for Chelsea.

Goal report that the investor and horse racing mogul submitted a bid to the Raine Group before Friday’s deadline.

It is understood that like many of the other bidders, Zedan’s bid have since increased their offer after securing additional capital.

Zedan has links with the royal family of Jordan and is married to the country’s princess, Noor Bint Asem.

Chelsea fans given ticket update

10:35 , Jamie Braidwood

Chelsea fans will be able to buy tickets for the club’s matches against Real Madrid in the Champions League and Crystal Palace in the FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley, it has been confirmed.

The UK Government has altered the Chelsea’s operating license following a round of talks and fans will also be able to purchase tickets for away games and women’s team fixtures, as long as the proceeds do not go to the club.

However, under the current agreement, Chelsea will be unable to sell any more tickets for the club’s remaining Premier League matches.

The upcoming home match against Brentford is sold out, as tickets went on sale before Roman Abramovich was sanctioned, but the home fixture against Arsenal on April 20 could be played in front of a reduced capacity with season ticket holders only able to attend.

However, a takeover could be completed by the time of the Arsenal match, at which point the club would no longer be required to adhere to the operating license.

Chelsea fans told Ricketts family are ‘decent people’ committed to diversity

10:11 , Jamie Braidwood

Muslim community leaders in Chicago have called on Chelsea fans to reject cancel culture and embrace “decent man” Tom Ricketts and his bid to buy the Blues.

Ahmed Rehab from the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has hailed Tom Ricketts’ response to the 2019 scandal, and has now urged Chelsea supporters not to write off the Cubs’ owner’s candidacy.

“The United States is riveted by division and it’s died in the wool sides that can’t speak to one another, can’t reach over the aisle and can’t see the decency in each other,” said Rehab.

“And it’s so polarised I think it damages America and I’m seeing it in the world as well. So the reason I’m speaking out, and this is my initiative, is because of my personal values. I’m tired of seeing this, I think it’s unfair.

“It’s fine if they don’t want the Ricketts family for whatever sporting reason, but it’s not fine to use my name or my action in the past to smear this person in an unfair manner. And I will speak out and say not in my name.

“He’s a decent man, I’ve dealt with him and Julian and the team at the Cubs. They are decent people, they love sports, they are in this for sporting reasons, they would be inclusive, they would embrace diversity.

“I’ve seen nothing but positive signs once I started dealing with them. I’ve seen the attacks and I can’t stand for it. For those who are interested in truth and fairness, it’s just not right.

“I see Tom Ricketts in the community here in Chicago, out there, interacting. I like that approachability, and I think any fan would.

“I think the Ricketts family with the Cubs are genuine about their desire for diversity and inclusion. And I feel they would do a good job owning a club like Chelsea.”

Roman Abramovich makes three takeover demands at Chelsea

09:00 , Jack Rathborn

Roman Abramovich has reportedly made demands that Chelsea’s new owners meet certain criteria as the Raine Group assess the current offers for the Blues.

Abramovich is keen for the new owners to have ‘a proven track record, a vision for the club and easy access to funds’, according to The Athletic.

That means the Russian oligarch is eager for the best bid to be selected, rather than the highest offer.

Thomas Tuchel impressed by players’ reaction to Chelsea off-field uncertainty

08:50 , Jack Rathborn

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel insisted he has been impressed rather than surprised by the way his players have handled the uncertainly surrounding the club.

The world and European club champions cruised into the FA Cup semi-finals with a 2-0 victory at Championship side Middlesbrough on Saturday evening, their sixth successive win and the fourth since sanctions were imposed upon owner Roman Abramovich.

Asked if he had been surprised, Tuchel said: “They have impressed me – not surprised, but impressed.

Thomas Tuchel impressed by players’ reaction to Chelsea off-field uncertainty

Thomas Tuchel says Chelsea will give everything in their pursuit of silverware

08:40 , Jack Rathborn

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has promised his team will give everything in an unlikely attempt to reel in Premier League pacesetters Manchester City and Liverpool.

The Blues made light of the off-field issues surrounding the club on Saturday evening to ease their way into the FA Cup semi-finals with a comfortable 2-0 sixth round victory at Championship Middlesbrough.

They will hope their ongoing ownership issues are resolved by the time they run out at Wembley next month and in the meantime, will set about the task of attempting to close a 10-point gap to the second-placed Reds, who trail the reigning champions by a single point.

Thomas Tuchel says Chelsea will give everything in their pursuit of silverware

Chelsea bidder Centricus pledges ‘exemplary custodianship’ of London club

08:30 , Jack Rathborn

Four Chelsea fans are behind London investment firm Centricus’ bid to buy the Blues, pledging “exemplary custodianship” of the Stamford Bridge club.

Global investment specialist Centricus manages a £29 billion fund, with co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and chief executive Garth Ritchie both big Chelsea fans.

Fellow supporters Cheyne Capital hedge fund manager Jonathan Lourie and Talis Capital’s Bob Finch have joined forces with Centricus for a bid to buy Chelsea that was submitted ahead of Friday night’s deadline.

New York merchant bank Raine Group will whittle down a score of bids into a shortlist as tight as three offers imminently.

Chelsea bidder Centricus pledges ‘exemplary custodianship’ of London club

Who will buy Chelsea? Takeover latest as potential new owners table bids to succeed Roman Abramovich

08:20 , Jack Rathborn

Chelsea are braced for a new era with the Roman Abramovich era set to end amid a flurry of bids to buy the European and world champions.

After sanctions against the Russian oligarch, including the freezing of his assets, the UK government are now overseeing the move which will bring a close to one of the most successful periods in world football history following his takeover of the club in 2003.

Initially handing over stewardship of the club in the wake of Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine, Abramovich stated that he would be selling the club as it was in “the best interest of the fans, employees, sponsors and partners”.

A statement from Abramovich continued: “I have instructed my team to set up a charitable foundation where all net proceeds from the sale will be donated. The foundation will be for the benefit of all victims of the war in Ukraine. This includes providing critical funds towards the urgent and immediate needs of victims, as well as supporting the long-term work of recovery.”

With five Premier League titles, two Champions Leagues and two Europa Leagues, five FA Cups, three League Cups, one Uefa Super Cup and one Club World Cup, Abramovich has delivered unprecedented success for the Londoners, transforming them into one of Europe’s biggest and most successful clubs. That platform means only a select group of the uber-rich will be able to afford the purchase of the London club, here are some contenders who could buy Chelsea:

Who will buy Chelsea? The potential new owners of club after Roman Abramovich

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

08:10 , Jack Rathborn

The Government has been urged to commit to legislation in its response to the fan-led review of football by the Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham.

Burnham says English football has reached “a now or never moment” and that significant reform will only be achieved if an independent regulator, recommended by the fan-led review, is underpinned by legislation.

Burnham, a supporter of the Fair Game group which seeks reforms to make clubs more sustainable, said: “There’s no doubt English football is at a crossroads.

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

Chelsea sale: Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

08:00 , Jack Rathborn

Chelsea suitors’ anxious wait to discover the shortlist of preferred bidders for the Premier League club looked set to drag past Tuesday night.

New York merchant bank the Raine Group will continue compiling the bids to whittle down a shortlist as tight as three offers.

The interested parties bidding for the Blues had initially expected to receive word on their candidacy on either Monday or Tuesday.

But the complex nature of the bids and sheer volume of information left Raine opting to take more time putting together that shortlist.

Chelsea sale: Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

Chelsea given green light to sell tickets for away games and cup matches

07:53 , Jack Rathborn

The UK Government has amended the general licence granted to Chelsea by announcing the club will now be allowed to sell tickets to away games and cup matches.

The Blues were banned from selling tickets after owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned for his links to Russian president Vladimir Putin.

But the Government has now put in place special dispensation for away fans, cup games and women’s fixtures provided Chelsea do not receive any revenue.

Sports Minister Nigel Huddleston said: “The Government has today made alterations to the licence to Chelsea Football club so that fans will be able to access tickets to away matches, cup games and women’s fixtures.

Chelsea given green light to sell tickets for away games and cup matches

Chelsea fans told Ricketts family are ‘decent people’ committed to diversity

07:47 , Jack Rathborn

Muslim community leaders in Chicago have called on Chelsea fans to reject cancel culture and embrace “decent man” Tom Ricketts and his bid to buy the Blues.

Chicago Cubs owners the Ricketts family are among the suitors locked in the bidding process to succeed Roman Abramovich as Chelsea owner.

Family patriarch Joe Ricketts was accused of Islamophobia in 2019, calling Muslims “my enemy” in leaked emails.

Chelsea fans have voiced their concerns via the social media hashtag ‘NoToRicketts’, while also raising issues with the club, though Joe Ricketts has no role at the Cubs nor in the bid to buy the Blues.

Chelsea fans told Ricketts family are ‘decent people’ committed to diversity

Chelsea ticket money to go to Ukraine victims

Wednesday 23 March 2022 21:08 , Jamie Braidwood

A Premier League spokesperson confirmed: “The revised licence allows fans to attend Chelsea FC games; Chelsea fans to travel to away Premier League fixtures and Chelsea fans to attend the FA Cup, Uefa Champions League and WSL games. The Premier League will receive and hold any revenue from the sale of these tickets that would normally have gone to Chelsea. Chelsea have requested and the Premier League agreed that this revenue will be donated to charity to benefit victims of the war in Ukraine. The beneficiary charities will be announced in due course after consultation with the club.”

Chelsea fans told Ricketts family are ‘decent people’ committed to diversity

Wednesday 23 March 2022 20:55 , Jamie Braidwood

Muslim community leaders in Chicago have called on Chelsea fans to reject cancel culture and embrace “decent man” Tom Ricketts and his bid to buy the Blues.

Chicago Cubs owners the Ricketts family are among the suitors locked in the bidding process to succeed Roman Abramovich as Chelsea owner.

Family patriarch Joe Ricketts was accused of Islamophobia in 2019, calling Muslims “my enemy” in leaked emails.

Chelsea fans have voiced their concerns via the social media hashtag ‘NoToRicketts’, while also raising issues with the club, though Joe Ricketts has no role at the Cubs nor in the bid to buy the Blues.

Ahmed Rehab from the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has hailed Tom Ricketts’ response to the 2019 scandal, and has now urged Chelsea supporters not to write off the Cubs’ owner’s candidacy.

Chelsea fans told Ricketts family are ‘decent people’ committed to diversity

Chelsea given green light to sell tickets for away games and cup matches

Wednesday 23 March 2022 20:16 , Jamie Braidwood

The amendment means Chelsea fans will be able to purchase tickets to future Premier League away fixtures, with revenue going to the home club.

Visiting fans will also be able to buy tickets for Chelsea’s remaining Premier League home fixtures, with the money going to the Premier League.

For future FA Cup and Champions League matches, fans will be able to purchase tickets with revenue collected by the relevant competition organiser or home club.

No further home tickets will be made available to fans at Chelsea’s remaining Premier League home fixtures, but season-ticket holders and holders of tickets purchased before the sanctions were imposed will still be able to attend.

The Government has made an exception for Women’s Super League fixtures to allow fans to purchase home as well as away tickets, due to the risk of the matches being played in front of empty stands.

Chelsea given green light to sell tickets for away games and cup matches

Chelsea given green light to sell tickets for away games and cup matches

Wednesday 23 March 2022 20:07 , Jamie Braidwood

The UK Government has amended the general licence granted to Chelsea by announcing the club will now be allowed to sell tickets to away games and cup matches.

The Blues were banned from selling tickets after owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned for his links to Russian president Vladimir Putin.

But the Government has now put in place special dispensation for away fans, cup games and women’s fixtures provided Chelsea do not receive any revenue.

Sports Minister Nigel Huddleston said: “The Government has today made alterations to the licence to Chelsea Football club so that fans will be able to access tickets to away matches, cup games and women’s fixtures.

“I would like to thank fans for their patience while we have engaged with the football authorities to make this possible.

“Since Roman Abramovich was added to the UK’s sanctions list for his links to Vladimir Putin we have worked extensively to ensure the club can continue to play football while ensuring the sanctions regime continues to be enforced.”

Chelsea fans given ticket boost as club allowed to sell tickets

Wednesday 23 March 2022 19:34 , Jamie Braidwood

Chelsea fans are set to be able to attend the club’s Champions League quarter-final against Real Madrid and FA Cup semi-final against Crystal Palace after the UK Government made alterations to its operating license.

The club are now allowed to sell tickets but are unable to receive money due to the sanctions placed on Roman Abramovich.

A statement from the sports minister Nigel Huddleston confirmed: “The Government has today made alterations to the license to Chelsea Football Club so that fans will be able to access tickets to away matches, cup games and women’s fixtures.

“I would like to thank fans for their patience while we have engaged with the football authorities to make this possible.”

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

Wednesday 23 March 2022 19:02 , Michael Jones

Chelsea can now expect to have full support at their FA Cup semi-final against Crystal Palace.

Roman Abramovich’s UK Government sanctions currently bar the Blues from selling any new tickets, but the Football Association has announced it is in talks with the Government over amendments to the club’s operating licence to allow tickets to be sold for next month’s Wembley showdown.

“We hope to have sell-out crowds at both of our Emirates FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley Stadium,” an FA spokesperson said.

“This includes tickets for Chelsea supporters for their match against Crystal Palace, and we are working with the Government on a method to achieve this whilst respecting the sanctions that are currently in place on Chelsea.”

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

US-Saudi investor Amr Zedan, owner of the Medina Spirit, bids for Chelsea

Wednesday 23 March 2022 18:43 , Michael Jones

The owner of disqualified Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit is among the bidders for Chelsea as part of the accelerated search for a new owner, a person with knowledge of the process told The Associated Press.

Amr Zedan, a Los Angeles-born Saudi investor, has registered his bid with the Raine Group — the bank overseeing the sale of the reigning European and world champions, the person said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss the bid publicly.

Zedan is chairman of the Zedan Group, which is involved in the energy and petrochemical sectors in Saudi Arabia and features the Zedan Racing Stables. He is married to Princess Noor Bint Asem of Jordan.

He joins a list of at least six publicly disclosed bidders for the west London club and Zedan, who is also chairman of the Saudi Polo Federation, is working on securing further financing.

Zedan has not been linked to the doping scandal that saw Medina Spirit test positive after the Kentucky Derby last May for a steroid, betamethasone, that is legal in Kentucky but banned on race day. The positive test threw the world’s best-known horse race into turmoil and cast an unflattering spotlight on trainer Bob Baffert.

US-Saudi investor, the Medina Spirit owner, bids for Chelsea

Chelsea takeover: Nick Candy ‘significantly’ increases bid for club

Wednesday 23 March 2022 18:27 , Michael Jones

Nick Candy has “significantly” increased his bid to buy Chelsea, a spokesperson for the British property tycoon confirmed.

Chelsea fan Candy has secured further funding through another South Korean financial backer, allowing the 49-year-old to submit an improved offer for the Stamford Bridge club.

Candy added South Korean investors Hana Financial Group and C&P Sports Group to the bid he submitted to New York bank Raine Group on Friday.

But the London billionaire has now further strengthened his hand, in the hope of pushing onto the shortlist of preferred bids being compiled by Raine.

Chelsea takeover: Nick Candy ‘significantly’ increases bid for club

Roman Abramovich ‘in talks’ to buy new football club, according to Turkish media

Wednesday 23 March 2022 18:14 , Michael Jones

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has allegedly begun talks to buy another European football club, even before his sale of Chelsea has been concluded, according to Turkish media outlet Fanatik.

Abramovich put Chelsea up for sale in early March before he was hit with sanctions by the UK government and had his assets frozen as a direct result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but is still able to sell the club - providing he doesn’t benefit from the proceeds.

And now, Fanatik have stated that the Russian billionaire is keen to remain within football, so has started negotiations to buy Turkish Super Lig club Goztepe. Turkey is currently not applying sanctions to Russians, and Abramovich’s superyachts have been seen docking in Turkey.

Goztepe president Mehmet Sepil recently announced that he would be leaving his role at the club but would would keep hold of duties until a replacement was found and talks between him and Abramovich’s representatives have supposedly already begun.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

Wednesday 23 March 2022 18:01 , Michael Jones

Chelsea suitors’ anxious wait to discover the shortlist of preferred bidders for the Premier League club looked set to drag on.

New York merchant bank the Raine Group will continue compiling the bids to whittle down a shortlist as tight as three offers.

The interested parties bidding for the Blues had initially expected to receive word on their candidacy on either Monday or Tuesday but the complex nature of the bids and sheer volume of information left Raine opting to take more time putting together that shortlist.

By close of business on Tuesday in the UK the various bidders for Chelsea had not received an update on the process. And Raine could require several more days yet to finalise the list.

Chelsea sale: Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

AC Milan owners among minority backers for Nick Candy bid

Wednesday 23 March 2022 17:48 , Michael Jones

Nick Candy’s takeover bid for Chelsea is being backed by the American hedge fund that owns Serie A giants AC Milan, according to reports by Sky News.

British luxury property developer and lifelong Chelsea fan Candy has submitted a bid for the Blues to the Raine Group - who are in the process of whittling down the offers they’ve received to a final shortlist of three - with an affiliate of Elliott Management, the New York-based investor that owns AC Milan, agreeing to inject a multi-million pound sum into the bid for a minority stake

Elliott Management is one of the most prominent names in global finance, lobbying for change on the boards of some of the world’s biggest companies, and have controlled AC Milan since 2018.

According to Sky News, City sources said on Wednesday that Elliott’s stake in Chelsea would be below the threshold regarded by UEFA as problematic in relation to dual club ownership. It would also hold no voting or governance rights, one of the sources said.

Candy ‘significantly increased’ his offer to buy Chelsea earlier this week but declined to comment on Elliott’s involvement in his bid, while the hedge fund also refused to comment.

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

Wednesday 23 March 2022 17:34 , Michael Jones

The Government has been urged to commit to legislation in its response to the fan-led review of football by the Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham.

Burnham says English football has reached “a now or never moment” and that significant reform will only be achieved if an independent regulator, recommended by the fan-led review, is underpinned by legislation.

Burnham, a supporter of the Fair Game group which seeks reforms to make clubs more sustainable, said: “There’s no doubt English football is at a crossroads.

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

Rudiger wants to stay at Chelsea

Wednesday 23 March 2022 17:20 , Michael Jones

According to reports, defender Antonio Rudiger wants to stay at Chelsea beyond this season despite his contract at Stamford Bridge ending in the summer.

Chelsea are currently unable to offer new contracts to players due to the licence imposed on them by the UK Government following sanctions on owner Roman Abramovich. Therefore there are doubts about the future of players such as Rudiger and club captain Cesar Azpilicueta, who also sees his current deal expiring.

Rudiger has been linked with a number of Europe’s top clubs and Italian outlet Gazzetta dello Sport claimed recently that the 29-year-old had agreed a four-year deal with Juventus.

If Chelsea can find a buyer for the club in the near future that would again enable them to offer the likes of Rudiger a renewal, something they will be keen on as the German has arguably had his best season for the Blues since joining from Roma in 2017.

Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and Juventus are three of the clubs interested in signing Rudiger. However, a stay at Chelsea is what the player would prefer.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Thiago Silva hands Chelsea boost after revealing plan to emulate Paolo Maldini

Wednesday 23 March 2022 17:09 , Michael Jones

News from on the pitch, as Thiago Silva has revealed that he hopes to emulate Paolo Maldini and play beyond the age of 40.

The Brazilian defender, 37, recently extended his Chelsea contract by a further season until the summer of 2023.

Having spent the final half-a-season of Maldini’s career alongside the Italian in AC Milan’s defence, Silva was offered an insight into what enabled the defender to have such longevity.

Maldini made his debut in 1985 at the Lombardy club and went on to play more than 900 times, before retiring at the age of 40 in 2009.

Silva believes that he extend his career similarly, and thinks he still has plenty left to give at the top level after changing his approach to ensure he recovers properly between games.

“I hope I can do the same thing that [Paolo] Maldini did at Milan, playing until he was 40 or 41 years old,” Silva told the Chelsea club website. “That’s my plan for the immediate future and I have prepared myself for that.

“When you’re young, you think you’re a superhero. I’d play one game a day so in terms of recovery it was a lot quicker, whereas now 24 hours seems like no time at all in which to recover.”

Thiago Silva hands Chelsea boost after revealing plan to emulate Paolo Maldini

‘Ridiculous’ to prevent Chelsea fans attending FA Cup semi-final – DCMS chair

Wednesday 23 March 2022 16:57 , Michael Jones

The Government has been urged to allow Chelsea fans access to FA Cup semi-final tickets, provided any proceeds go to the people of Ukraine.

Julian Knight, the chair of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee, has called for changes to the special licence imposed upon the club after their owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the British Government.

The intention of the licence is to deny the club – and by extension Abramovich, who the Government says has ties to Russian president Vladimir Putin – the ability to generate new revenue, including from ticket sales.

Chelsea fans were unable to buy any tickets for the FA Cup quarter-final win at Middlesbrough beyond those purchased prior to the imposition of sanctions, but Knight insists a solution must be in place ahead of the semi-final against Crystal Palace at Wembley next month.

‘Ridiculous’ to prevent Chelsea fans attending FA Cup semi-final – DCMS chair

Ricketts family respond to Chelsea fan backlash at bid to buy club

Wednesday 23 March 2022 16:46 , Michael Jones

The Ricketts family have rejected all hate “in the strongest possible terms” amid supporter unrest at the Chicago Cubs owners’ candidacy to buy Chelsea.

Chelsea fans had the hashtag ‘NoToRicketts’ trending on Twitter, with supporters raising concerns with the club and online.

Family patriarch Joe Ricketts was accused of Islamophobia in 2019, after a string of emails were leaked but the Ricketts family have now moved to insist they do not accept any kind of racism or hatred, in a bid to prove their suitability to take over Chelsea from Roman Abramovich.

Joe Ricketts is not involved in the Ricketts family bid, with the candidacy led by Chicago Cubs chairman Tom.

“Our family rejects any form of hate in the strongest possible terms,” said the Ricketts family. “Racism and Islamophobia have no place whatsoever in our society. We have developed deep and abiding partnerships with the Muslim community in Chicago, as well as with all communities of colour.

“Respect for diversity and inclusion are central to our family’s values. If we prevail in our bid for Chelsea, we commit to the club and to the fans that we will actively promote these values.”

Ricketts family respond to Chelsea fan backlash at bid to buy club

Thomas Tuchel says Chelsea will give everything in their pursuit of silverware

Wednesday 23 March 2022 16:35 , Michael Jones

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has promised his team will give everything in an unlikely attempt to reel in Premier League pacesetters Manchester City and Liverpool.

The Blues made light of the off-field issues surrounding the club on Saturday evening to ease their way into the FA Cup semi-finals with a comfortable 2-0 sixth round victory at Championship Middlesbrough.

They will hope their ongoing ownership issues are resolved by the time they run out at Wembley next month and in the meantime, will set about the task of attempting to close a 10-point gap to the second-placed Reds, who trail the reigning champions by a single point.

Asked if they could still involve themselves in the race, Tuchel, whose side have lost only once in 14 games in all competitions – on penalties to Liverpool in the Carabao Cup final – said: “The problem is they are also on a run since a long time.

“They are like three years on a run, I have the feeling, it seems like they are three years on a run and it’s like our 13 games is not enough.

“We have to be honest. We will never admit anything before things are decided, we will always push ourselves and push ourselves to the limit. We cannot do anything else.”

Thomas Tuchel says Chelsea will give everything in their pursuit of silverware

Sir Martin Broughton vows Chelsea will never have to fight for future again

Wednesday 23 March 2022 16:24 , Michael Jones

Sir Martin Broughton has vowed Chelsea would never again face another fight for their future should he win the battle to buy the Stamford Bridge club.

The former British Airways chairman has submitted his consortium bid to buy Chelsea, alongside fellow Blues fan and World Athletics president Lord Sebastian Coe.

Major US financier Michael Klein has a prominent role in Broughton’s bid, that pledges to keep Chelsea at European football’s pinnacle.

Amid a proposal to put fans at the centre of club decision-making, Broughton pledged to stop Chelsea ever suffering again from geopolitical shifts.

“The plan will guarantee that the club is never beholden to a single individual or sovereign wealth fund, ensuring that the club never faces a crisis like this again,” read a statement outlining Broughton’s plans.

Sir Martin Broughton vows Chelsea will never have to fight for future again

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

Wednesday 23 March 2022 16:10 , Michael Jones

Chelsea can now expect to have full support at their FA Cup semi-final against Crystal Palace.

Roman Abramovich’s UK Government sanctions currently bar the Blues from selling any new tickets, but the Football Association has announced it is in talks with the Government over amendments to the club’s operating licence to allow tickets to be sold for next month’s Wembley showdown.

“We hope to have sell-out crowds at both of our Emirates FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley Stadium,” an FA spokesperson said.

“This includes tickets for Chelsea supporters for their match against Crystal Palace, and we are working with the Government on a method to achieve this whilst respecting the sanctions that are currently in place on Chelsea.”

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

Chelsea takeover: Shortlist of three bids set to be decided ahead of sale

Wednesday 23 March 2022 15:58 , Michael Jones

Raine Group, the US bank overseeing the sale of Premier League club Chelsea, plans to narrow down the shortlist of bidders to three on Monday or Tuesday.

Chelsea were initially put up for sale by owner Roman Abramovich following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and before sanctions were imposed on the oligarch by the British government, effectively giving it control of the club.

Raine set a deadline of 2100 GMT last Friday for bids to be made, with several being made public, while sources close to the deal said many more had been submitted privately.

Some are only just being made public now, with London-based global investment firm Centricus confirming on Monday that they had offered to buy Chelsea, a bid driven by co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and CEO Garth Ritchie, who are both said to be Blues season ticket holders.

Reports in the British media have named several other bidders, including Saudi Media, headed by businessman Mohamed Alkhereiji.

Chelsea bidders set to be narrowed down to shortlist of three

Centricus emerge as bidder for Chelsea

Wednesday 23 March 2022 15:47 , Michael Jones

Four Chelsea fans are behind London investment firm Centricus’ bid to buy the Blues, pledging “exemplary custodianship” of the Stamford Bridge club.

Global investment specialist Centricus manages a £29 billion fund, with co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and chief executive Garth Ritchie both big Chelsea fans.

Fellow supporters Cheyne Capital hedge fund manager Jonathan Lourie and Talis Capital’s Bob Finch have joined forces with Centricus for a bid to buy Chelsea that was submitted ahead of Friday night’s deadline.

Centricus is the latest to declare its candidacy to buy Chelsea, revealing its intentions to maintain the Blues’ status as one of the globe’s elite teams.

Chelsea bidder Centricus pledges ‘exemplary custodianship’ of London club

Who will buy Chelsea? Takeover latest as potential new owners table bids to succeed Roman Abramovich

Wednesday 23 March 2022 15:35 , Michael Jones

Chelsea are braced for a new era with the Roman Abramovich era set to end amid a flurry of bids to buy the European and world champions.

After sanctions against the Russian oligarch, including the freezing of his assets, the UK government are now overseeing the move which will bring a close to one of the most successful periods in world football history following his takeover of the club in 2003.

Initially handing over stewardship of the club in the wake of Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine, Abramovich stated that he would be selling the club as it was in “the best interest of the fans, employees, sponsors and partners”.

A statement from Abramovich continued: “I have instructed my team to set up a charitable foundation where all net proceeds from the sale will be donated. The foundation will be for the benefit of all victims of the war in Ukraine. This includes providing critical funds towards the urgent and immediate needs of victims, as well as supporting the long-term work of recovery.”

Who will buy Chelsea? The potential new owners of club after Roman Abramovich

Roman Abramovich ‘in talks’ to buy new football club, according to Turkish media

Wednesday 23 March 2022 15:20 , Luke Baker

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has allegedly begun talks to buy another European football club, even before his sale of Chelsea has been concluded, according to Turkish media outlet Fanatik.

Abramovich put Chelsea up for sale in early March before he was hit with sanctions by the UK government and had his assets frozen as a direct result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but is still able to sell the club - providing he doesn’t benefit from the proceeds.

And now, Fanatik have stated that the Russian billionaire is keen to remain within football, so has started negotiations to buy Turkish Super Lig club Goztepe. Turkey is currently not applying sanctions to Russians, and Abramovich’s superyachts have been seen docking in Turkey.

Goztepe president Mehmet Sepil recently announced that he would be leaving his role at the club but would would keep hold of duties until a replacement was found and talks between him and Abramovich’s representatives have supposedly already begun.

Roman Abramovich is allegedly in talks to buy Turkish club Goztepe (PA Wire)
Roman Abramovich is allegedly in talks to buy Turkish club Goztepe (PA Wire)

Nick Candy ‘significantly’ increases bid for club

Wednesday 23 March 2022 15:07 , Luke Baker

Nick Candy has “significantly” increased his bid to buy Chelsea, a spokesperson for the British property tycoon confirmed.

Chelsea fan Candy has secured further funding through another South Korean financial backer, allowing the 49-year-old to submit an improved offer for the Stamford Bridge club.

Candy added South Korean investors Hana Financial Group and C&P Sports Group to the bid he submitted to New York bank Raine Group on Friday.

But the London billionaire has now further strengthened his hand, in the hope of pushing onto the shortlist of preferred bids being compiled by Raine.

Chelsea takeover: Nick Candy ‘significantly’ increases bid for club

US-Saudi investor Amr Zedan, owner of the Medina Spirit, bids for Chelsea

Wednesday 23 March 2022 14:54 , Luke Baker

The owner of disqualified Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit is among the bidders for Chelsea as part of the accelerated search for a new owner, a person with knowledge of the process told The Associated Press.

Amr Zedan, a Los Angeles-born Saudi investor, has registered his bid with the Raine Group — the bank overseeing the sale of the reigning European and world champions, the person said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss the bid publicly.

Zedan is chairman of the Zedan Group, which is involved in the energy and petrochemical sectors in Saudi Arabia and features the Zedan Racing Stables. He is married to Princess Noor Bint Asem of Jordan.

He joins a list of at least six publicly disclosed bidders for the west London club and Zedan, who is also chairman of the Saudi Polo Federation, is working on securing further financing.

Zedan has not been linked to the doping scandal that saw Medina Spirit test positive after the Kentucky Derby last May for a steroid, betamethasone, that is legal in Kentucky but banned on race day. The positive test threw the world’s best-known horse race into turmoil and cast an unflattering spotlight on trainer Bob Baffert.

US-Saudi investor, the Medina Spirit owner, bids for Chelsea

Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

Wednesday 23 March 2022 14:40 , Luke Baker

Chelsea suitors’ anxious wait to discover the shortlist of preferred bidders for the Premier League club looked set to drag on.

New York merchant bank the Raine Group will continue compiling the bids to whittle down a shortlist as tight as three offers.

The interested parties bidding for the Blues had initially expected to receive word on their candidacy on either Monday or Tuesday but the complex nature of the bids and sheer volume of information left Raine opting to take more time putting together that shortlist.

By close of business on Tuesday in the UK the various bidders for Chelsea had not received an update on the process. And Raine could require several more days yet to finalise the list.

Chelsea sale: Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

Wednesday 23 March 2022 14:27 , Luke Baker

The Government has been urged to commit to legislation in its response to the fan-led review of football by the Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham.

Burnham says English football has reached “a now or never moment” and that significant reform will only be achieved if an independent regulator, recommended by the fan-led review, is underpinned by legislation.

Burnham, a supporter of the Fair Game group which seeks reforms to make clubs more sustainable, said: “There’s no doubt English football is at a crossroads.

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

Thiago Silva hands Chelsea boost after revealing plan to emulate Paolo Maldini

Wednesday 23 March 2022 14:14 , Luke Baker

News from on the pitch, as Thiago Silva has revealed that he hopes to emulate Paolo Maldini and play beyond the age of 40.

The Brazilian defender, 37, recently extended his Chelsea contract by a further season until the summer of 2023.

Having spent the final half-a-season of Maldini’s career alongside the Italian in AC Milan’s defence, Silva was offered an insight into what enabled the defender to have such longevity.

Maldini made his debut in 1985 at the Lombardy club and went on to play more than 900 times, before retiring at the age of 40 in 2009.

Silva believes that he extend his career similarly, and thinks he still has plenty left to give at the top level after changing his approach to ensure he recovers properly between games.

“I hope I can do the same thing that [Paolo] Maldini did at Milan, playing until he was 40 or 41 years old,” Silva told the Chelsea club website. “That’s my plan for the immediate future and I have prepared myself for that.

“When you’re young, you think you’re a superhero. I’d play one game a day so in terms of recovery it was a lot quicker, whereas now 24 hours seems like no time at all in which to recover.”

Thiago Silva hands Chelsea boost after revealing plan to emulate Paolo Maldini

Ricketts family respond to Chelsea fan backlash at bid to buy club

Wednesday 23 March 2022 14:03 , Luke Baker

The Ricketts family have rejected all hate “in the strongest possible terms” amid supporter unrest at the Chicago Cubs owners’ candidacy to buy Chelsea.

Chelsea fans had the hashtag ‘NoToRicketts’ trending on Twitter, with supporters raising concerns with the club and online.

Family patriarch Joe Ricketts was accused of Islamophobia in 2019, after a string of emails were leaked but the Ricketts family have now moved to insist they do not accept any kind of racism or hatred, in a bid to prove their suitability to take over Chelsea from Roman Abramovich.

Joe Ricketts is not involved in the Ricketts family bid, with the candidacy led by Chicago Cubs chairman Tom.

“Our family rejects any form of hate in the strongest possible terms,” said the Ricketts family. “Racism and Islamophobia have no place whatsoever in our society. We have developed deep and abiding partnerships with the Muslim community in Chicago, as well as with all communities of colour.

“Respect for diversity and inclusion are central to our family’s values. If we prevail in our bid for Chelsea, we commit to the club and to the fans that we will actively promote these values.”

Ricketts family respond to Chelsea fan backlash at bid to buy club

Thomas Tuchel says Chelsea will give everything in their pursuit of silverware

Wednesday 23 March 2022 13:48 , Luke Baker

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has promised his team will give everything in an unlikely attempt to reel in Premier League pacesetters Manchester City and Liverpool.

The Blues made light of the off-field issues surrounding the club on Saturday evening to ease their way into the FA Cup semi-finals with a comfortable 2-0 sixth round victory at Championship Middlesbrough.

They will hope their ongoing ownership issues are resolved by the time they run out at Wembley next month and in the meantime, will set about the task of attempting to close a 10-point gap to the second-placed Reds, who trail the reigning champions by a single point.

Asked if they could still involve themselves in the race, Tuchel, whose side have lost only once in 14 games in all competitions – on penalties to Liverpool in the Carabao Cup final – said: “The problem is they are also on a run since a long time.

“They are like three years on a run, I have the feeling, it seems like they are three years on a run and it’s like our 13 games is not enough.

“We have to be honest. We will never admit anything before things are decided, we will always push ourselves and push ourselves to the limit. We cannot do anything else.”

Thomas Tuchel says Chelsea will give everything in their pursuit of silverware

Thomas Tuchel impressed by players’ reaction to Chelsea off-field uncertainty

Wednesday 23 March 2022 13:35 , Luke Baker

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel insisted he has been impressed rather than surprised by the way his players have handled the uncertainly surrounding the club.

The world and European club champions cruised into the FA Cup semi-finals with a 2-0 victory at Championship side Middlesbrough on Saturday, their sixth successive win and the fourth since sanctions were imposed upon owner Roman Abramovich.

Asked if he had been surprised, Tuchel said: “They have impressed me – not surprised, but impressed.

“At one point, we needed to accept that we did not cause the situation and we cannot influence the situation, we cannot change the situation no matter what we do and how much we talk about it and how much we worry.”

Thomas Tuchel impressed by players’ reaction to Chelsea off-field uncertainty

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

Wednesday 23 March 2022 13:22 , Luke Baker

Chelsea can now expect to have full support at their FA Cup semi-final against Crystal Palace.

Roman Abramovich’s UK Government sanctions currently bar the Blues from selling any new tickets, but the Football Association has announced it is in talks with the Government over amendments to the club’s operating licence to allow tickets to be sold for next month’s Wembley showdown.

“We hope to have sell-out crowds at both of our Emirates FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley Stadium,” an FA spokesperson said.

“This includes tickets for Chelsea supporters for their match against Crystal Palace, and we are working with the Government on a method to achieve this whilst respecting the sanctions that are currently in place on Chelsea.”

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

AC Milan owners among minority backers for Nick Candy bid

Wednesday 23 March 2022 13:08 , Luke Baker

Nick Candy’s takeover bid for Chelsea is being backed by the American hedge fund that owns Serie A giants AC Milan, according to reports by Sky News.

British luxury property developer and lifelong Chelsea fan Candy has submitted a bid for the Blues to the Raine Group - who are in the process of whittling down the offers they’ve received to a final shortlist of three - with an affiliate of Elliott Management, the New York-based investor that owns AC Milan, agreeing to inject a multi-million pound sum into the bid for a minority stake

Elliott Management is one of the most prominent names in global finance, lobbying for change on the boards of some of the world’s biggest companies, and have controlled AC Milan since 2018.

According to Sky News, City sources said on Wednesday that Elliott’s stake in Chelsea would be below the threshold regarded by UEFA as problematic in relation to dual club ownership. It would also hold no voting or governance rights, one of the sources said.

Candy ‘significantly increased’ his offer to buy Chelsea earlier this week but declined to comment on Elliott’s involvement in his bid, while the hedge fund also refused to comment.

Property tycoon Nick Candy, centre, “significantly” increased his bid on Monday (PA Wire)
Property tycoon Nick Candy, centre, “significantly” increased his bid on Monday (PA Wire)

Centricus emerge as bidder for Chelsea

Wednesday 23 March 2022 12:55 , Luke Baker

Four Chelsea fans are behind London investment firm Centricus’ bid to buy the Blues, pledging “exemplary custodianship” of the Stamford Bridge club.

Global investment specialist Centricus manages a £29 billion fund, with co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and chief executive Garth Ritchie both big Chelsea fans.

Fellow supporters Cheyne Capital hedge fund manager Jonathan Lourie and Talis Capital’s Bob Finch have joined forces with Centricus for a bid to buy Chelsea that was submitted ahead of Friday night’s deadline.

Centricus is the latest to declare its candidacy to buy Chelsea, revealing its intentions to maintain the Blues’ status as one of the globe’s elite teams.

Chelsea bidder Centricus pledges ‘exemplary custodianship’ of London club

Sir Martin Broughton vows Chelsea will never have to fight for future again

Wednesday 23 March 2022 12:41 , Luke Baker

Sir Martin Broughton has vowed Chelsea would never again face another fight for their future should he win the battle to buy the Stamford Bridge club.

The former British Airways chairman has submitted his consortium bid to buy Chelsea, alongside fellow Blues fan and World Athletics president Lord Sebastian Coe.

Major US financier Michael Klein has a prominent role in Broughton’s bid, that pledges to keep Chelsea at European football’s pinnacle.

Amid a proposal to put fans at the centre of club decision-making, Broughton pledged to stop Chelsea ever suffering again from geopolitical shifts.

“The plan will guarantee that the club is never beholden to a single individual or sovereign wealth fund, ensuring that the club never faces a crisis like this again,” read a statement outlining Broughton’s plans.

Sir Martin Broughton vows Chelsea will never have to fight for future again

Roman Abramovich ‘in talks’ to buy new football club, according to Turkish media

Wednesday 23 March 2022 12:38 , Luke Baker

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has allegedly begun talks to buy another European football club, even before his sale of Chelsea has been concluded, according to Turkish media outlet Fanatik.

Abramovich put Chelsea up for sale in early March before he was hit with sanctions by the UK government and had his assets frozen as a direct result of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, but is still able to sell the club - providing he doesn’t benefit from the proceeds.

And now, Fanatik have stated that the Russian billionaire is keen to remain within football, so has started negotiations to buy Turkish Super Lig club Goztepe. Turkey is currently not applying sanctions to Russians, and Abramovich’s superyachts have been seen docking in Turkey.

Goztepe president Mehmet Sepil recently announced that he would be leaving his role at the club but would would keep hold of duties until a replacement was found and talks between him and Abramovich’s representatives have supposedly already begun.

Roman Abramovich is allegedly in talks to buy a Turkish Super Lig club (PA Wire)
Roman Abramovich is allegedly in talks to buy a Turkish Super Lig club (PA Wire)

Bids raised to take ownership of Chelsea from Roman Abramovich

Wednesday 23 March 2022 12:27 , Luke Baker

The public lobbying to be chosen as a preferred bidder for Chelsea stepped up as increased offers were being mulled by bankers tasked with selling the English Premier League club for sanctioned owner Roman Abramovich.

British property tycoon Nick Candy revealed he “significantly” increased the amount offered, having already submitted a bid of more than £2 billion ($2.6 billion) for the club on Friday to the New York-based bank the Raine Group, overseeing the process.

Abramovich is being forced to sell the reigning world and European champions after he was sanctioned in Britain and his assets were frozen as part of a crackdown on oligarchs following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The Russian was also disqualified from running the west London club and being a director by the Premier League.

Another consortium that bid features Todd Boehly, part owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss, and Jonathan Goldstein, a London-based property investor who is CEO of Cain International. Michael Broughton, the former chairman of Liverpool and British Airways, is leading a consortium that includes track great Sebastian Coe, who is president of World Athletics, an IOC member and a Chelsea fan.

The Ricketts family, who own the Chicago Cubs, have linked with hedge fund manager Ken Griffin in a consortium. The family fortune was made by Joe Ricketts as chairman of electronic trading platform TD Ameritrade. His son, Tom Ricketts, serves as Cubs chairman.

Bids raised to take ownership of Chelsea from Abramovich

Chelsea takeover: Shortlist of three bids set to be decided ahead of sale

Wednesday 23 March 2022 12:15 , Luke Baker

Raine Group, the US bank overseeing the sale of Premier League club Chelsea, plans to narrow down the shortlist of bidders to three.

Chelsea were initially put up for sale by owner Roman Abramovich following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and before sanctions were imposed on the oligarch by the British government, effectively giving it control of the club.

Raine set a deadline of 2100 GMT last Friday for bids to be made, with several being made public, while sources close to the deal said many more had been submitted privately.

Some are only just being made public now, with London-based global investment firm Centricus confirming on Monday that they had offered to buy Chelsea, a bid driven by co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and CEO Garth Ritchie, who are both said to be Blues season ticket holders.

Chelsea bidders set to be narrowed down to shortlist of three

Will the Chelsea takeover be a watershed moment for the Premier League?

Wednesday 23 March 2022 11:59 , Luke Baker

The sale of Chelsea will tell us if football has actually learned much over the last few weeks, and whether we are moving into a new era, where the game is more alert to how it has been hijacked by far higher powers, writes Miguel Delaney.

This entire Chelsea story has articulated a number of core issues for the governance of the sport. There is the unquestioning embrace of any money, the protection of clubs, the slowness of regulation and – most of all – just how precariously subject football is to forces way beyond its control. This is the geopolitical position the game has got itself into.

The forced departure of Roman Abramovich exploded the aloof fantasy the Premier League could forever go untouched by real-world concerns.

The tide is coming out, to paraphrase Warren Buffett, and it’s only now we’re discovering who’s been swimming with emperor’s – or perhaps state – clothes. Where once the Premier League saw international investment at so many clubs as piles of cash, it now looks like a lot of potential problems and financial holes.

Will the Chelsea takeover be a watershed moment for the Premier League?

Chelsea supporters group urges Ricketts family bid to be turned down

Wednesday 23 March 2022 11:46 , Luke Baker

Chelsea supporters view the Ricketts family’s bid to purchase the club with “universal disdain” owing to their political views and donations and want it to be rejected, according to the leader of a prominent fans’ group.

American firm Raine Group is conducting the club’s sale, and a variety of bids from individual billionaires and consortiums have been submitted. One bid has come from the Ricketts family, the owners of the Chicago Cubs.

The bid is being fronted by Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts, whose father Joe came in for heavy criticism in 2012 after calling muslims “the enemy” in the United States.

In 2016, the elder Ricketts donated at least one million dollars to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, while son Pete Ricketts has served as governor of Nebraska since 2014 and has faced criticism for his support of the death penalty, backing of Trump during his impeachment trial, and climate change scepticism.

Now the head of the Chelsea Chicago Supporters Club Brian Wolff says that the family’s bid must be rejected.

Chelsea supporters group urges Ricketts family bid for the club to be turned down

AC Milan owners among minority backers for Nick Candy bid

Wednesday 23 March 2022 11:40 , Luke Baker

Nick Candy’s takeover bid for Chelsea is being backed by the American hedge fund that owns Serie A giants AC Milan, according to reports by Sky News.

British luxury property developer and lifelong Chelsea fan Candy has submitted a bid for the Blues to the Raine Group - who are in the process of whittling down the offers they’ve received to a final shortlist of three - with an affiliate of Elliott Management, the New York-based investor that owns AC Milan, agreeing to inject a multi-million pound sum into the bid for a minority stake

Elliott Management is one of the most prominent names in global finance, lobbying for change on the boards of some of the world’s biggest companies, and have controlled AC Milan since 2018.

According to Sky News, City sources said on Wednesday that Elliott’s stake in Chelsea would be below the threshold regarded by UEFA as problematic in relation to dual club ownership. It would also hold no voting or governance rights, one of the sources said.

Candy ‘significantly increased’ his offer to buy Chelsea earlier this week but declined to comment on Elliott’s involvement in his bid, while the hedge fund also refused to comment.

Property tycoon Nick Candy, centre, “significantly” increased his bid on Monday (PA Wire)
Property tycoon Nick Candy, centre, “significantly” increased his bid on Monday (PA Wire)

Who will buy Chelsea? Takeover latest as potential new owners table bids to succeed Roman Abramovich

Wednesday 23 March 2022 11:32 , Luke Baker

Chelsea are braced for a new era with the Roman Abramovich era set to end amid a flurry of bids to buy the European and world champions.

After sanctions against the Russian oligarch, including the freezing of his assets, the UK government are now overseeing the move which will bring a close to one of the most successful periods in world football history following his takeover of the club in 2003.

Initially handing over stewardship of the club in the wake of Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine, Abramovich stated that he would be selling the club as it was in “the best interest of the fans, employees, sponsors and partners”.

With five Premier League titles, two Champions Leagues and two Europa Leagues, five FA Cups, three League Cups, one Uefa Super Cup and one Club World Cup, Abramovich has delivered unprecedented success for the Londoners, transforming them into one of Europe’s biggest and most successful clubs.

That platform means only a select group of the uber-rich will be able to afford the purchase of the London club, here are some contenders who could buy Chelsea:

Who will buy Chelsea? The potential new owners of club after Roman Abramovich

US-Saudi investor Amr Zedan, owner of the Medina Spirit, bids for Chelsea

Wednesday 23 March 2022 11:19 , Luke Baker

The owner of disqualified Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit is among the bidders for Chelsea as part of the accelerated search for a new owner, a person with knowledge of the process told The Associated Press on Tuesday.

Amr Zedan, a Los Angeles-born Saudi investor, has registered his bid with the Raine Group — the bank overseeing the sale of the reigning European and world champions, the person said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss the bid publicly.

Zedan is chairman of the Zedan Group, which is involved in the energy and petrochemical sectors in Saudi Arabia and features the Zedan Racing Stables. He is married to Princess Noor Bint Asem of Jordan.

He joins a list of at least six publicly disclosed bidders for the west London club and Zedan, who is also chairman of the Saudi Polo Federation, is working on securing further financing.

Zedan has not been linked to the doping scandal that saw Medina Spirit test positive after the Kentucky Derby last May for a steroid, betamethasone, that is legal in Kentucky but banned on race day. The positive test threw the world’s best-known horse race into turmoil and cast an unflattering spotlight on trainer Bob Baffert.

US-Saudi investor, the Medina Spirit owner, bids for Chelsea

Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

Wednesday 23 March 2022 11:06 , Luke Baker

Chelsea suitors’ anxious wait to discover the shortlist of preferred bidders for the Premier League club looked set to drag on.

New York merchant bank the Raine Group will continue compiling the bids to whittle down a shortlist as tight as three offers.

The interested parties bidding for the Blues had initially expected to receive word on their candidacy on either Monday or Tuesday but the complex nature of the bids and sheer volume of information left Raine opting to take more time putting together that shortlist.

By close of business on Tuesday in the UK the various bidders for Chelsea had not received an update on the process. And Raine could require several more days yet to finalise the list.

Chelsea sale: Wait to discover Raine Group’s preferred bidders drags on

Ricketts family respond to Chelsea fan backlash at bid to buy club

Wednesday 23 March 2022 10:54 , Luke Baker

The Ricketts family have rejected all hate “in the strongest possible terms” amid supporter unrest at the Chicago Cubs owners’ candidacy to buy Chelsea.

Chelsea fans had the hashtag ‘NoToRicketts’ trending on Twitter, with supporters raising concerns with the club and online.

Family patriarch Joe Ricketts was accused of Islamophobia in 2019, after a string of emails were leaked but the Ricketts family have now moved to insist they do not accept any kind of racism or hatred, in a bid to prove their suitability to take over Chelsea from Roman Abramovich.

Joe Ricketts is not involved in the Ricketts family bid, with the candidacy led by Chicago Cubs chairman Tom.

“Our family rejects any form of hate in the strongest possible terms,” said the Ricketts family. “Racism and Islamophobia have no place whatsoever in our society. We have developed deep and abiding partnerships with the Muslim community in Chicago, as well as with all communities of colour.

“Respect for diversity and inclusion are central to our family’s values. If we prevail in our bid for Chelsea, we commit to the club and to the fans that we will actively promote these values.”

Ricketts family respond to Chelsea fan backlash at bid to buy club

Thiago Silva hands Chelsea boost after revealing plan to emulate Paolo Maldini

Wednesday 23 March 2022 10:41 , Luke Baker

News from on the pitch, as Thiago Silva has revealed that he hopes to emulate Paolo Maldini and play beyond the age of 40.

The Brazilian defender, 37, recently extended his Chelsea contract by a further season until the summer of 2023.

Having spent the final half-a-season of Maldini’s career alongside the Italian in AC Milan’s defence, Silva was offered an insight into what enabled the defender to have such longevity.

Maldini made his debut in 1985 at the Lombardy club and went on to play more than 900 times, before retiring at the age of 40 in 2009.

Silva believes that he extend his career similarly, and thinks he still has plenty left to give at the top level after changing his approach to ensure he recovers properly between games.

“I hope I can do the same thing that [Paolo] Maldini did at Milan, playing until he was 40 or 41 years old,” Silva told the Chelsea club website. “That’s my plan for the immediate future and I have prepared myself for that.

“When you’re young, you think you’re a superhero. I’d play one game a day so in terms of recovery it was a lot quicker, whereas now 24 hours seems like no time at all in which to recover.”

Thiago Silva hands Chelsea boost after revealing plan to emulate Paolo Maldini

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet the Saudi Media group fronted by owner and Blues fan Mohamed Alkhereiji

Wednesday 23 March 2022 10:30 , Jack Rathborn

The biggest media company in the Middle East, the Saudi Media group, have also been linked.

Reports suggest they have lodged a £2.7billion bid to win the auction for the club.

Saudi Media’s owner Mohamed Alkhereiji is a Chelsea fan and is apparently leading a private consortium hoping to secure the purchase.

Saudi Arabia’s PIF own Newcastle United after the much-criticised takeover last year with Saudi Media apparently receiving no backing from the state.

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Woody Johnson, New York Jets owner

Wednesday 23 March 2022 10:20 , Jack Rathborn

US billionaire Woody Johnson has also been linked.

The US Ambassador to the UK until last year and an associate of former US president Donald Trump is said to be ready offer £2billion for the club.

“What Chelsea need right now is longevity and stability when it comes to a new owner. Woody and his team think they can provide that,” a source told The Sun.

“He’s run the Jets successfully and knows a huge amount about the sports industry. And he’s spent the last four years in London and knows it well.”

Johnson is also owner of NFL franchise, New York Jets.

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Centricus, investment firm with multiple season-ticket holders

Wednesday 23 March 2022 10:10 , Jack Rathborn

Global investment firm Centricus is keen to take over the club and “maintain and support existing management”.

With £29bn in assets and several Chelsea season-ticket holders as part of the group, including Centricus co-founder Nizar Al-Bassam and chief executive Garth Ritchie, who will head the bid.

Hedge fund manager Jonathan Lourie of Cheyne Capital and Bob Finch of Talis Capital also make up part of the group, with a statement from the group stating it “will be committed to supporting [Chelsea] and its key stakeholders to ensure its continued success”.

It added: “Our financing for the deal includes funding for the completion of the transaction and funding for working capital required for the day-to-day operations of the CFC Group, funds required to maintain an elite global brand, investment in grassroots and in-community football initiatives such as the Chelsea Academy, the women’s team, the youth development programme and the Chelsea Foundation and strategic real estate investment.

“The intention is to maintain and support existing management on both the business and sporting operations of the CFC Group. We intend to maintain the existing strategy direction.

“Clearly, the CFC Group has been operating in challenging conditions and we appreciate the importance for the CFC Group, the fans and other key stakeholders of ensuring a smooth and stable ownership transition.”

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Nick Candy, property developer and season ticket holder

Wednesday 23 March 2022 10:00 , Jack Rathborn

Property developer Nick Candy initially assembled a bid worth £2.5bn to buy Chelsea, but over the last weekend an improved offer arrived with a large Korean financial institution joining his consortium.

The elder Candy brother is attempting to form a consortium to buy the club, who he supports, with the bid aimed at including plans to redevelop Stamford Bridge.

“Nick Candy is actively exploring a number of options for a potential bid for Chelsea Football Club,” a spokesperson for Candy said in a statement to Sportsmail. “Any bid would be made in conjunction with another party (or consortium) and we have serious interest from several international partners.”

“Mr Candy has a huge affinity with Chelsea. His father was asked to play for the club and he has been watching matches at Stamford Bridge since the age of four. The club deserves a world class stadium and infrastructure and Mr Candy’s unique expertise and background in real estate would be a hugely valuable asset to delivering this vision.”

Alongside brother Christian, Candy formed property development company Candy & Candy in 1999.

The firm has since been involved in a number of high-profile developments in London, including luxury residential and retail complex One Hyde Park in Knightsbridge.

Nick Candy took over sole ownership of the siblings’ business, renamed Candy Property, in 2018 and has diversified his portfolio through investment arm Candy Ventures.

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Todd Boehly, part-ownerer of Los Angeles Dodgers

Wednesday 23 March 2022 09:50 , Jack Rathborn

A potential leader of that consortium is reportedly Todd Boehly. The American has courted Chelsea before - in 2019, he had a $3 billion (£2.24 billion) offer turned down by Abramovich as he looked to add the Premier League club to a sporting portfolio already including part-ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team and Los Angeles Sparks basketball franchise.

Boehly added a stake in the LA Lakers last year and is an owner of fantasy sports behemoth DraftKings. He is the founder of private investment firm Eldridge Partners, which is involved in a broad range of industries.

“Football’s the biggest sport in the world, the passion the fans have for the sport and the teams is unparalleled,” Boehly told Bloomberg in 2019 of his interest in buying Chelsea.

“So what you are trying to build with these teams, you are really trying to a) win and b) be part of the community.

“The opportunity we had with the Dodgers was really about part-ownership with Los Angeles, how are we going to win, how are we going to drive championships and how are we going to build passion. If you look at what the Premier League offers, it’s all of those things.

“It’s the highest quality play, it’s the best players, and you also have a media market that’s just really developing.”

Who will buy Chelsea? Meet Hansjorg Wyss, Swiss billionaire who made his fortune with medical device manufacturer

Wednesday 23 March 2022 09:40 , Jack Rathborn

Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss has already confirmed that he has been offered the chance to buy Chelsea.

Wyss, 86, made his fortune as the founder and president of Synthes USA, a medical device manufacturer. The company was sold to pharmaceutical giants Johnson & Johnson for $19.7 billion in 2012.

The octogenarian lives in Wyoming and is a prominent supporter and financial backer of environmental causes and progressive politics.

He told Swiss outlet Blick that he would have to join with others in a consortium to buy the club.

“I have to wait four to five days now. Abramovich is currently asking far too much,” Wyss explained. “You know, Chelsea owe him £2billion [it is £1.5billion]. But Chelsea has no money. That means: those who buy Chelsea should compensate Abramovich.

“As of today, we don’t know the exact selling price. I can well imagine starting at Chelsea with partners. But I have to examine the general conditions first. But what I can already say: I’m definitely not doing something like this alone.

“If I buy Chelsea, then with a consortium consisting of six to seven investors.”

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

Wednesday 23 March 2022 09:30 , Ben Burrows

Chelsea can now expect to have full support at their FA Cup semi-final against Crystal Palace.

Roman Abramovich’s UK Government sanctions currently bar the Blues from selling any new tickets, but the Football Association has announced it is in talks with the Government over amendments to the club’s operating licence to allow tickets to be sold for next month’s Wembley showdown.

“We hope to have sell-out crowds at both of our Emirates FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley Stadium,” an FA spokesperson said.

“This includes tickets for Chelsea supporters for their match against Crystal Palace, and we are working with the Government on a method to achieve this whilst respecting the sanctions that are currently in place on Chelsea.”

FA ‘working with government’ to allow Chelsea to sell tickets for cup semi-final

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

Wednesday 23 March 2022 09:20 , Jack Rathborn

The Government has been urged to commit to legislation in its response to the fan-led review of football by the Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham.

Burnham says English football has reached “a now or never moment” and that significant reform will only be achieved if an independent regulator, recommended by the fan-led review, is underpinned by legislation.

Burnham, a supporter of the Fair Game group which seeks reforms to make clubs more sustainable, said: “There’s no doubt English football is at a crossroads.

Government urged to act as English football faces ‘now or never moment’

Nick Candy ‘significantly' increases offer to buy Chelsea

Wednesday 23 March 2022 09:11 , Ben Burrows

Nick Candy has “significantly” increased his bid to buy Chelsea, a spokesperson for the British property tycoon confirmed.

Chelsea fan Candy has secured further funding through another South Korean financial backer, allowing the 49-year-old to submit an improved offer for the Stamford Bridge club.

Candy added South Korean investors Hana Financial Group and C&P Sports Group to the bid he submitted to New York bank Raine Group on Friday.

But the London billionaire has now further strengthened his hand, in the hope of pushing onto the shortlist of preferred bids being compiled by Raine.

“Nick Candy has improved his British-led bid to buy Chelsea Football Club following the addition of another large international backer to his Blue Football Consortium,” said a spokesperson for Candy.

“Mr Candy submitted a bid of more than £2billion to The Raine Group last Friday but has now increased this significantly after another large Korean financial institution joined his consortium over the weekend.

“Proof of the additional funds has been sent to The Raine Group.”

Chelsea supporters group urges Ricketts family bid for the club to be turned down

Wednesday 23 March 2022 09:00 , Jack Rathborn

Chelsea supporters view the Ricketts family’s bid to purchase the club with “universal disdain” owing to their political views and donations and want it to be rejected, according to the leader of a prominent fans’ group.

The Blues have been up for sale since current owner Roman Abramovich’s British assets were frozen by the UK government in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

As one of Russia’s most wealthy oligarchs, Abramovich’s relationship with president Vladimir Putin has caused concern and both the UK and European Union have moved to reign in his financial power. The ramifications for Chelsea have been significant — the club is currently unable to conduct day-to-day transactions including retail and ticket sales and the renewal of player contracts.

Chelsea supporters group urges Ricketts family bid for the club to be turned down

Who are the candidates to take over Chelsea?

Wednesday 23 March 2022 08:50 , Tom Kershaw

Here is a look at some of the potential suitors looking to take over Chelsea. Not all the parties interested in purchasing the club have chosen to make their bids or backers public, with the Raine Group assessing that information before deciding on the three most viable candidates.

Who will buy Chelsea? The potential new owners of club after Roman Abramovich

Chelsea bidders wait anxiously on Raine Group verdict

Wednesday 23 March 2022 08:38 , Tom Kershaw

Chelsea suitors’ anxious wait to discover the shortlist of preferred bidders for the Premier League club continues to drag on.

New York merchant bank the Raine Group are still believed to be compiling the bids to whittle down a shortlist as tight as three offers.

The interested parties bidding for the Blues had initially expected to receive word on their candidacy on either Monday or Tuesday.

But the complex nature of the bids and sheer volume of information left Raine opting to take more time putting together that shortlist.

By close of business in the UK on Tuesday the various bidders for Chelsea had not received an update on the process. And Raine could require several more days yet to finalise the list.

Chelsea Chicago Supporters Club chief passionately warns against sale to Ricketts family

Wednesday 23 March 2022 08:27 , Jack Rathborn

Brian Wolff, head of the Chelsea Chicago Supporters Club, said in a statement: “I’ve had a unique position hearing what supporters in Chicago and worldwide have said regarding the Ricketts family’s bid for Chelsea,” he wrote in a statement posted on Twitter. “I can report the vast majority of opinion has been of universal disdain.

“The Ricketts’ political donations, fundraising and support for candidates who do not share the inclusive views of Chelsea Football Club and its supporters are wholly inconsistent with 19 years of fantastic work done by the club and the Chelsea Foundation, most notably as a leader in committing to a living wage and efforts to protect and promote equality for BAME and LGBTQ+ communities.

“Their ownership of Chicago Cubs baseball and redevelopment of Wrigley Field raises serious doubts whether they will build upon the club’s success on the pitch, and also the continued existence of the Chelsea Pitch Owners and the goal to keep Chelsea Football Club playing at Stamford Bridge at our forever home.

“On behalf of countless supporters worldwide, I urge you to reject their bid for ownership of Chelsea Football Club in favour of others who will commit to not only building upon the last two decades of investment in players and infrastructure, but equally important, the investment in supporters and the values we hold dear.”

Chelsea takeover: Ricketts family offers to meet fans over bid

Wednesday 23 March 2022 08:21 , Jack Rathborn

The Ricketts family have offered to meet Chelsea fans to allay concerns over its potential ownership after a fierce backlash to the Chicago Cubs owners.

A statement read: “Our family rejects any form of hate in the strongest possible terms. Racism and Islamophobia have no place whatsoever in our society. We have developed deep and abiding partnerships with the Muslim community in Chicago, as well as with all communities of colour.

“Respect for diversity and inclusion are central to our family’s values. If we prevail in our bid for Chelsea, we commit to the club and to the fans that we will actively promote these values.”

Chelsea takeover latest news

Tuesday 22 March 2022 22:41 , Lawrence Ostlere

The sale of Chelsea FC continues to drag on as the New York merchant bank overseeing the process, the Raine Group, compiles a shortlist of three preferred offers. The various interested parties had expected to receive word on whether they had made the final three early this week but the complexity of the deal and information involved has meant more time is needed, despite the clear urgency of the matter following Roman Abramovich’s santions by the UK government.