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Gone for big money

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How football has changed since the turn of the century. The beautiful game, where once only on-field performances mattered, has seen a drastic change of approach. An influx of billionaires and popular names around the world have desired the taste of action in football which has shifted the paradigm of the game.

The biggest football sale was completed in recent memory(more on that later), with Everton being the latest club that has been put up for sale by owner Farhad Moshiri. Buying football clubs isn’t always plain sailing for potential buyers and nether for the club themselves.

In most cases, a boyhood fan wants to buy their beloved club they once dreamed of – speaking of Sir Jim Ratcliffe. It hasn’t always been a boyhood fan ending up buying the club, and the most significant sales in football suggest just that. FootTheBall looks at some of the most expensive club sales in football history.

 

5. Valencia (2014) – Sold to Peter Lim for £345 million

Singaporean business tycoon Peter Lim bought Valencia in 2014. He paid a total of £345m to buy the club, which took almost a year of negotiations. The billionaire spent a reported £200m to buy the club and a further £140m was spent to build a new stadium for the Spanish outfit.

Peter Lim also is now the sole owner after initially taking charge of 70.5% of the stakes at the club. Valencia have won the Copa Del Rey in 2019, but under Lim’s ownership that’s as far they have gone. It was reported in 2019 that Lim had put the club up for sale, but the Singaporean has since dismissed those rumours.

4. Arsenal (2018) – Sold to Stan Kroenke for £600 million

Arsenal have had a rollercoaster of a 21st century. From Arsene Wenger’s invincibles to Mikel Arteta’s young charges leading the Premier League table, at halfway point, a lot has happened.

Part reason of their past and recent success has been their owner Stan Kroenke. The American business powerhouse had bought some shares in Arsenal in 2011 and in 2018 too full control of the Emirates outfit. He has now officially become the sole shareholder of the North London club. Kroenke is also the owner of Kroenke Sports and Entertainment, NFL side Los Angeles Rams and NBA franchise Denver Nuggets.

 

3. Manchester United (2005) – Sold to The Glazers for £800 million

The Glazer family had purchased the Old Trafford outfit in the year 2005 which was also the most expensive purchase up until the start of 2022. Under Glazers and Sir Alex Ferguson, the Red Devils became one of the most successful clubs in the Premier League era.

Although, ever since the legendary manager’s retirement, the club have struggled in sorts of aspect. And according to multiple reports, the Glazers have put Manchester United up for sale on November 22, 2022. The club has been one of the most profitable sides in the football world, but that hasn’t been replicated in their on-field performances. The club is also reportedly valued at £4.5 billion by the Glazers.

 

2. AC Milan (2022) – Sold to RedBird Capital Partners for £1.1 billion

The legendary Italian club are the defending champions of Serie A. But it took them exactly 10 years to win that title from their previous one. Since their last title, AC Milan took a decade to win their next one, and that says it all about their struggles in recent seasons.

RedBird Capital Partners acquired the Serie A giants in the summer of 2022 from Elliott Management Corporation, after watching the sleeping giants awaken last term. The RedBird Capital Partners are a much more stable ownership than their previous one, but that does not necessarily mean success on the field.

 

1. Chelsea (2022) – Sold to Todd Boehly & Clearlake Capital for £4.2 billion

The summer that changed the fortunes of the club. In the off-season of 2022, Roman Abramovic was forced to put his beloved club, Chelsea, up for sale. The ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia was a big reason that forced the Russian oligarch’s hand into it.

Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital created a consortium in the hope of buying the Blues. After months of negotiation and difficulties, Chelsea finally had a new owner. Chelsea’s new owners Todd Boehly, along with Clearlake Capital, invested a mammoth £4.25B to buy the club. Chelsea have been a busy club under the new owners, and the Blues’ unique transfer strategy says it all.

 

Arnold Lewis
A hardcore Chelsea fan, who is often found playing football on the weekends. He has an exceptional voice and his rendition of old Hindi classic songs will make your heart melt. He is the man with the funky hair.

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