Sir Martin Broughton, who was among the final bidders in the race to buy Chelsea last summer, claims that Roman Abramovich’s influence continues to be felt at Stamford Bridge.
The Boehly-Clearlake consortium won the race to buy the Blues for £2.5billion through the investment bank Raine Group, with a further commitment to invest £1.75bn into the club over the next 10 years.
The decision to sell Chelsea was taken out of Abramovich’s hands after he was sanctioned by the UK Government following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and he didn’t personally profit from the sale.
Speaking at the Financial Times Business of Football Summit, Broughton, who led a consortium including Crystal Palace investors Josh Harris and Dave Blitzer, explained in new detail how the new owners have to follow an Abramovich blueprint.
He said: “The strange thing was this was a reluctant seller who was not receiving any of the money, so normally price would be the ultimate dictator. It was not the ultimate dictator here.
“We were very much led by Raine, Bruce [Buck] and Marina [Granovskaia] to bid an amount. Agree to put an amount over the next 10 years in this piece, be it the academy, you’ve got to agree to invest this much into the women’s team.
“It was very focused. In fact, it was Roman trying to say to the fans, ‘I don’t want to leave’, but if I have to, whoever takes over will do what I would have done.”
The auction-style process saw several buyers competing against each other, including Broughton with Harris and Blitzer.