Swiss business tycoon Hansjoerg Wyss is considering buying football club Chelsea from Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, Wyss told Swiss newspaper Blick.
“Abramovich is currently trying to sell all his villas in England. He also wants to get rid of Chelsea quickly now. I, along with three other people, received an offer on Tuesday to buy Chelsea from Abramovich,” Blick quoted Wyss as saying in an interview published on Wednesday. Abramovich’s spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Wyss said he would have to wait four or five days to see how things play out. “Abramovich is asking for far too much at the moment. You know: Chelsea owes him 2 billion pounds. But Chelsea has no money. Meaning: those who buy Chelsea should compensate Abramovich,” Wyss said.
On Saturday, Abramovich said he was giving “stewardship” of the club to trustees of its charitable foundation after calls for him to be subject to sanctions following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Since then, several Russian individuals and entities have been put under sanctions by the UK government, and some British opposition lawmakers have said Abramovich should be included on that list.
Wyss said Abramovich’s exact sales price was still unclear. “I can well imagine joining Chelsea with partners. But first I have to check the general conditions carefully. What I can already say, though, is that I certainly won’t do something like that on my own. If I buy Chelsea, it will be with a consortium of six or seven investors.”
Abramovich bought the West London club in 2003 and his investment has helped produce the most successful era in the team’s history – winning five Premier League titles, five FA Cups and the Champions League twice.