Chelsea Sale: Two preferred bids are now ‘frontrunners’ as the Ricketts family has been repulsed

A number of potential buyers have surfaced since Roman Abramovich announced he was selling Chelsea after 19 years as owner of the club, but the field appears to be thinning

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The race for Chelsea ownership has taken another turn, with two bids at the head of the billing.

Since then, a number of applicants have come forward Roman Abramovich announced his sales plansappreciation of First League billion dollar association. Despite the Russian nature added to the UK Government’s list of sanctioned personsmany bidders remained undeterred.

In the meantime, however, the group has thinned out. Unsuccessful bidders are being notified one by one that they are out of the running, and bids involving Woody Johnson and the Ricketts family are reportedly among those being missed.

Raine Group, the bank overseeing the sale, set a deadline for bids to be received last Friday. She has now started letting unsuccessful applicants, one by one, know they missed it.

After previous reports suggested that Saudi Media Group had fallen by the wayside, Sky news reports that Woody Johnson is now out of the running as well. The New York Jets owner, a former US Ambassador to the UK, had been reported as an early frontrunner.

Accordingly the athlete, Property developer Nick Candy is also now out of the running while the financial times reports that the Ricketts family — owners of the Chicago Cubs baseball franchise — will not be the new owners.

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Nick Candy is reportedly out of the running to become Chelsea’s new owner



That has been reported alleged emails attributed to members of the Ricketts familythat contained Islamophobic language had made some Chelsea Players hesitate with their bid. Although the FT report says the offer was “weakened” by this particular revelation, it’s unclear how much of a factor was in them not making the distance.

“Our family strongly rejects any form of hatred. Racism and Islamophobia have no place in our society.” a statement by the Ricketts family read. Joe Ricketts, who was credited with alleged Islamophobia, is not part of the application itself.

“We have developed deep and enduring partnerships with Chicago’s Muslim community, as well as all communities of color. Respect for diversity and inclusion are core values ​​of our family. If we win our bid to join Chelsea, we make a commitment to the club and to the fans that we will actively promote those values.”

Todd Boehly is said to be still in the running


AFP via Getty Images)

According to the FT, the latest developments leave two clear frontrunners. One is the bid by American businessman Todd Boehly, one of the first to receive media coverage after Abramovich’s announcement, while the other is being led by Josh Harris and David Blitzer.

Harris and Blitzer have invested heavily in US esports and also participated crystal palace in 2015. Her bid has the support of Martin Broughton, the former Liverpool Chairman during the Hicks and Gillett era.

Investment firm Clearlake Capital is reportedly backing Boehly’s bid, which is also backed by fellow Conservative Lord Finkelstein. The winning bidder is expected to pay around $3bn (£2.27bn) for the club.

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