Keep it clean – and keep quiet! Chelsea takeover bidders are told NOT to make any more public statements to stop the £3bn fight to buy out Abramovich turning ugly, with Todd Boehly and Sir Martin Broughton’s consortiums ahead of the Ricketts
- Bidders for Chelsea have been advised not to make further public statements
- Raine Group is hoping to ensure the process does not turn unsavoury
- Preferred buyer for the club is due to be presented week beginning April 18
- Groups fronted by Todd Boehly and Sir Martin Broughton are the favourites
The consortiums still involved in the race to buy Chelsea have been warned not to make any more open statements amid concerns the final stages of the process could descend into a distasteful public battle.
It is understood Raine, the merchant bank advising the Premier League club with the sale, has advised the four groups shortlisted to take over at Stamford Bridge to refrain from making public declarations in the coming days to ensure the remainder of the process does not turn unsavoury.
The battle for the Blues will intensify over the next two weeks as Raine, Chelsea and the UK Government decide which offer is selected as the preferred bidder.
Eagerness from all four parties to gain an upper hand could lead to groups going public with their intentions for the club, a scenario Raine are understood to be wary of in fear of the process turning ugly.
It remains to be seen whether the consortiums heed the advice as the race enters its closing stages, with a number of parties speaking publicly throughout the process so far.
The battle to replace Roman Abramovich as Chelsea owner will intensify in the coming weeks
A preferred buyer for the club is due to be presented to the Government next month
Broughton has already been doing the media rounds in recent weeks, giving interviews to the BBC, talkSPORT and Sky in an attempt to boost the profile of his group’s bid – which is also fronted by Sebastian Coe and is believed to have the financial backing of Josh Harris and Dave Blitzer, who each own 18 per cent of Crystal Palace.
The advice from Raine could be a blow to the bid from the Ricketts Family, which has a PR struggle on their hands after family figurehead Joe Ricketts — who would not be involved at Chelsea — expressed anti-Muslim sentiment in emails sent between 2009 and 2013 that surfaced in 2019.
Any attempt from the Ricketts Family to swing public opinion could draw the ire of Raine and Chelsea, given the latest update from the bank.
Nick Candy, whose Blue Football Consortium failed to make the shortlist, had also given an extensive interview to The Sun newspaper.
Sportsmail reported on Sunday that shortlisted parties involved have received confirmation that they can increase their offers for the crisis club, with a preferred buyer due to be presented to the Government on the week beginning April 18.
Raine have set a deadline of April 11 for the second bids.
The New York-based bank have also informed groups that they can meet Chelsea’s key personnel – including head coach Thomas Tuchel and key director Marina Granovskaia – and tour the club’s facilities in the coming days as part of their due diligence process.
Much like Raine’s advice to the bidders, Chelsea also want the details of their talks with the bidders to remain completely confidential.
US tycoon Todd Boehly is one of the frontrunners to buy the west London club
The group fronted by Sir Martin Broughton is also one of the favourites to land the club
Raine, Chelsea and the Government want a sale concluded by the end of next month.
As it stands, the groups fronted by US tycoon Todd Boehly and Sir Martin Broughton are believed to be the front runners to buy the west London club.
Boston Celtics owner Stephen Pagliuca and the Ricketts Family – who own the Chicago Cubs – are also among the shortlisted candidates.
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