Roman Abramovich could have bought Arsenal instead of Chelsea but was mistakenly told they weren’t for sale – The Sun

Roman Abramovich could have bought Arsenal instead of Chelsea but was mistakenly told they weren’t for sale – The Sun

March 6, 2022

ROMAN ABRAMOVICH could have bought Arsenal instead of Chelsea— but he was mistakenly warned off the Gunners by ignorant Swiss bankers.

And the billionaire Russian oligarch tried several times unsuccessfully to lure Gunners talisman Thierry Henry to Stamford Bridge when the Frenchman was in his pomp.

The stunning revelations have been made in book, The Club, penned by two Wall Street Journal writers.

They spoke at length with executives from leading Premier League clubs.

The book claims in 2003, Abramovich hired Swiss bank UBS to examine the economics of English top-flight football.

One of its findings was that 'Arsenal were categorically not for sale'.

Abramovich instead took over Chelsea for £140million and went on to win five Prem titles and a Champions League.

The book also says former Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein believed the club’s owners would have cashed in if Abramovich had offered.

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Another claim is Abramovich met with Tottenham’s chairman.

But 'while his Mercedes trundled along Tottenham High Road, he looked out and said in Russian, "This is worse than Omsk" —  the grim Siberian outpost where he had a refinery.'

In a recent development, Abramovich handed over control of the West London club following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

A statement announced that Abramovich has given 'stewardship and care' of the club to trustees of Chelsea's charitable foundation.

It is understood the move will NOT have any immediate impact for the Blues on the pitch.

Football decisions will remain the responsibility of Marina Granovskaia and Stamford Bridge hero Petr Cech who are already looking after the transfers and squad contracts.

Abramovich has been designated a ‘person of interest’ by the UK Government and was named by Lib Dem MP Layla Moran among 35 prominent Russians she believes should have their assets frozen and confiscated.

But it is unknown if any sanctions will be made against him as part of Boris Johnson's measures against Russia.

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