Lawyers for Roman Abramovich and the UK government are still in talks over the sale of Chelsea
Roman Abramovich remains hopeful of finding a legal solution to usher in the sale of Chelsea, but the UK government has yet to agree to terms, according to the PA news agency.
Lawyers for Abramovich and the UK government are expected to remain in talks over how to deal with the Stamford Bridge club’s £1.5billion debt to the Chelsea owner.
Abramovich wanted to write off that debt, but British government sanctions blocked that process amid frozen accounts.
Downing Street chiefs are said to have expressed repeated concerns that Abramovich would renege on his promise to walk away from those loans, despite the Chelsea owner’s detailed assurances and planning.
The government is expected to seek legally binding assurances that Abramovich will not benefit from Chelsea’s sale in any way.
Abramovich’s lawyers are believed to be confident their latest proposals will prove acceptable to Downing Street.
Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly has agreed a buyout deal to buy Chelsea for £4.25billion in the early hours of May 7 after winning the ultra-competitive, public-only race.
US tycoon Boehly met Chelsea managers Thomas Tuchel and Emma Hayes last week and is now hoping to complete the takeover with a bit more delay.
Todd Boehly met Thomas Tuchel and the men’s team yesterday at Cobham. Today he met Emma Hayes, her team and players, as well as youth development manager Neil Bath here at the club’s training ground. pic.twitter.com/csqhnB3DSz
– Chelsea FC Women (@ChelseaFCW) May 13, 2022
The Premier League must give final approval to Boehly’s consortium through owner and director testing, before the government issues a new license to allow the sale to go through.
Government approval for the sale should also give the green light to Abramovich’s plan to have the proceeds donated to a new charitable foundation.
Former UNICEF UK executive director Mike Penrose was tasked with setting up the foundation to provide humanitarian aid, starting with victims of the war in Ukraine.
Penrose insisted the foundation could “change the face of humanitarian aid”, with some £2.5billion set to be donated to the independent charity.
Abramovich has officially put Chelsea up for sale following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The 55-year-old was then sanctioned by the British government on March 10, with Downing Street claiming to have proven his links to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Chelsea’s temporary government license expires on May 31, with the date acting as a deadline for the sale.
The expected resolution between Abramovich and the UK government should mean the deadline remains on track to be met.
Eldridge Industries co-founder Boehly will become the majority owner of Chelsea once its takeover is complete.
Clearlake Capital will take the majority stake in Chelsea’s new structure, with California investment firm co-founder Behdad Eghbali set to work closely with Boehly on major financial decisions for the Blues.