Chelsea takeover imminent after final agreement reached

May 27, 2022, 2:11 PM | Updated: May 28, 2022, 7:20 am
FILE - Chelsea soccer club owner Roman Abramovich attends the UEFA Women's Champions League final s...

FILE - Chelsea soccer club owner Roman Abramovich attends the UEFA Women's Champions League final soccer match against FC Barcelona in Gothenburg, Sweden, May 16, 2021. Western allies are considering whether to allow Russian oligarchs to buy their way out of sanctions and using the money to rebuild Ukraine, according to government officials familiar with the matter. Former Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, who was sanctioned over his links to Putin has said that net proceeds from the sale of the soccer team would be donated to victims of the war in Ukraine. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, File)

(AP Photo/Martin Meissner, File)

LONDON (AP) — The sale of Premier League club Chelsea is expected to be completed Monday after a “final and definitive” agreement was reached with the consortium fronted by Los Angeles Dodgers part-owner Todd Boehly.

The club said Saturday that “a final and definitive agreement was entered into last night” to sell to the Boehly and Clearlake Capital consortium. The price is 2.5 billion pounds ($3.2 billion) — the highest ever for a sports team.

“It is expected that the transaction will be completed on Monday,” the club said.

The announcement followed a series of approvals allowing Roman Abramovich to sell after he was sanctioned over his links to Russian President Vladimir Putin after the invasion of Ukraine. Abramovich has owned the club for 19 years.

The British government, which had sanctioned Abramovich, approved the sale this week after ensuring that the Russian oligarch could not profit from it. The Premier League had earlier given its approval.

Chelsea has been operating under a government license since Abramovich’s assets were frozen in March and it expires Tuesday.

“It has been an honor of a lifetime to be a part of this club,” Abramovich said in a statement posted on Chelsea’s website.

“My goal has been to ensure that the next owner has a mindset that will enable success for the men’s and women’s team, as well as the will and drive to continue developing other key aspects of the club, such as the academy and the vital work of Chelsea Foundation,” he added.

The men’s team has won 21 trophies during Abramovich’s ownership. Chelsea fans have become accustomed to lavish spending under Abramovich, with more than $1 billion net spending on players.

Boehly’s group was chosen earlier this month after pledging to invest 1.75 billion pounds ($2.2 billion) in the teams and infrastructure.

The consortium also features Dodgers principal owner Mark Walter, Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss, and funding from private equity firm Clearlake.

“I am pleased this search has now come to a successful conclusion,” Abramovich said. “As I hand over Chelsea to its new custodians, I would like to wish them the best of success, both on and off the pitch.”

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Chelsea takeover imminent after final agreement reached