Roman Abramovich turns down offer to sell Chelsea for £2 billion
The Russian businessman got an offer to sell the club from the founder of holding Ineos, James Ratcliffe, who was named the wealthiest British person in 2018.
Russian businessman Roman Abramovich declined the offer of the richest man in the UK, James Ratcliffe, to sell Abramovich-owned football club Chelsea for 2 billion pounds, London paper Daily Mail reported today.
According to the publication, Ratcliffe, who a month earlier headed the rating of the richest people in Britain according to The Sunday Times with a net worth of £21.05 billion, already owns football club Lausanne-Sport, featured in the top league of Switzerland.
The founder and main shareholder of petrochemical holding Ineos James Ratcliffe, like Roman Abramovich - is a big football fan, attends the matches of Chelsea by subscription, and moreover, owns a mansion near Chelsea stadium Stamford Bridge.
Roman Abramovich bought Chelsea in 2003 for £140 million, but in 15 years he has invested, according to the same newspaper, at least 4 billion pounds in the club - 2.5 billion alone went for salaries of football players. Official representatives of Abramovich and Ratcliffe refused from comments.
The information that Abramovich intends to sell Chelsea appeared in early June. Shortly before this, it became known that the oligarch obtained the citizenship of Israel. In turn, Abramovich became a citizen of this country after the UK refused to grant him an investment visa when the entrepreneur’s previous one expired against the backdrop of an ‘espionage’ row with the poisoning of the Skripals and the deteriorated diplomatic climate between the two countries. Because of the lack of a visa, the billionaire failed to be present at the FA Cup final, in which Chelsea beat Manchester United.
The Israeli passport gives a visa-free entry to the UK, however, without an investor visa, the right to work and run business in the United Kingdom. On May 31, Chelsea club announced the freezing of the project on a new stadium, which was planned to be completed by 2022. The message of the club calls an "unfavorable investment climate" the reason for the suspension of the project. Abramovich withdrew the application for a new investment visa after receiving Israeli citizenship.
On the eve of the tournament, some British media published provocative materials on the expectable behavior of local fans at the World Сup, and also referred to the challenging situation between two countries.