The saga of who will replace Roman Abramovich as the owner of Chelsea Football Club is now over, with news that a bid from a consortium led by American Todd Boehler has been accepted.
The news means that the West London football club is on the verge of a new era and that a replacement for Mr Abramovich, who was owner for almost two decades, has been found.
Ahead of the impending confirmation of the Boehly consortium as Chelsea’s new owners, we take a look at what happened to Roman Abramovich, including some of the success the club had under his tenure and what led him to need to step away from ownership of the club.
Has the sale of Chelsea FC been confirmed?
The sale of Chelsea FC to the Todd Boehly consortium has been given the approval of the Premier League.
In a statement on 24 May, a Premier League spokesperson said: “The Premier League Board has today approved the proposed takeover of Chelsea Football Club by the Todd Boehly/Clearlake Consortium.
“The purchase remains subject to the Government issuing the required sale licence and the satisfactory completion of the final stages of the transaction.
“The Board has applied the Premier League’s Owners’ and Directors’ Test (OADT) to all prospective Directors, and undertaken the necessary due diligence.”
The spokesperson added: “The members of the Consortium purchasing the club are affiliates of the Clearlake Capital Group, L.P., Todd Boehly, Hansjorg Wyss and Mark Walter.
“Chelsea FC will now work with the relevant Governments to secure the necessary licences to complete the takeover.”
Who is Roman Abramovich?
Roman Abramovich is a Russian billionaire who has made his fortune, according to Forbes, in major investments including in steel as well as having shares in nickel producer Norilsk Nickel.
Since 2018, he has also had Israli citizenship.
When did Roman Abramovich take over at Chelsea?
Abramovich bought Chelsea for £140 million in 2003. He bought out then owners and Chelsea supporters Matthew Harding and Ken Bates.
During his time as owner, he has loaned the club an estimated £1.5 billion. This has gone towards making stadium developments and buying in some of the best players in the world.
His time at the club helped put Chelsea back on the footballing map, and saw the club win a wide range of trophies.
Abramovich won five Premier League titles, five FA Cups, three League Cups, two Community Shields, two UEFA Champions Leagues, two UEFA Europa Leagues, one UEFA Super Cup and most recently the FIFA Club World Cup during his near 20 years as Chelsea owner.
Why has he been sanctioned?
Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine at the end of February, elite Russian business leaders were targeted with economic sanctions.
Ambramovich was one of these figures who was hit with sanctions.
The businessman was a close confidant of former Russian president Boris Yeltsin, as well as the current sitting president Vladimir Putin.
Where is Roman Abramovich now?
The whereabouts of the former Chelsea owner is somewhat unclear, but activity earlier this year made it clear that he was keen to move assets before facing further Western punishment.
In mid-March, it was reported that his two superyachts had been moved to Turkish waters from Barcelona.
The two boats have a combined value of well in the excess of £1 billion.
Other reports have suggested that it is likely Abramovich is back in Russia, yet these were also dated in March.