The Roman Abramovich era at Chelsea is set to come to an end imminently after a consortium led by Todd Boehly had their £4.25bn offer for the club approved by the government and the Premier League. And now, attention has turned to what fans can expect moving forward and whether Boehly and co will provide another golden era akin to what was seen in Abramovich’s reign.
You could say that everything at Chelsea ground to a half when sanctions were placed on Abramovich. It’s led to moves for players and the renewal of the contracts of key men falling through, which has put the club on the back foot. So, the immediate future under the new ownership group will see Chelsea playing catch up and working through their to-do list, including contract renewals for the likes of N’Golo Kante and Mason Mount.
What’s strikingly obvious is that Chelsea are some way short of both Manchester City and Liverpool. If they want to challenge, they’re going to have to spend significant funds, and that’s just to replace outgoing stars such as Antonio Rudiger. Spurs recently announced an injection of cash in the region of £150 million as they step up their attempts to cement themselves as a top-four outfit once again.
If the new ownership group is willing to spend over £4 billion to buy the club, you’d think they will have similar ambitions to Abramovich. So, challenging for honours domestically and in Europe will be a prerequisite. But, they can’t just spend willy nilly. They must balance things off to stay within FFP guidelines. It could lead to Chelsea striking new sponsorship deals with global brands, such as Entain, who own the online gaming service, PartyCasino. It would allow for more investment on the pitch, which everyone, especially the fans, expects to see.
Abramovich spoke about the requirement for further investment into the academy at Chelsea, and that will undoubtedly happen when the Boehly consortium gets their deal over the line. The Chelsea academy has proven successful on a couple of fronts during Abramovich’s time at Stamford Bridge. First, it’s been a source of money, with players in the academy system being sold for profit and loaned out with fees involved. The academy has also been responsible for producing the likes of Trevoh Chalobah and Mason Mount too.
So, in many respects, things will arguably look very similar to what they did with Abramovich at the helm for the foreseeable future. And is there anything significantly wrong with that? On the contrary, further investment on and off the pitch will likely put Chelsea in a strong position next season and for future campaigns.
The only difference could be that the new ownership group make more funds available to back Thomas Tuchel and to fund the closing of the gap between themselves and the likes of City and Liverpool. But, it would cost hundreds of millions across the next several transfer windows.