The latest on the Chelsea takeover saga following Roman Abramovich’s decision to sell up after he was sanctioned amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
American billionaire Ken Griffin traveled to London earlier this week and held talks with prospective Chelsea owners the Ricketts family.
The Telegraph have reported the 53-year-old flew to the UK as Tom and Laura Ricketts held talks with key figures at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck and club directors Eugene Tenenbaum and Marina Granovskaia represented the reigning Champions League winners as Monday’s deadline for improved bids draws ever closer.
It has now been confirmed whether Griffin was at the meeting – but the report does suggest his presence in the UK has shown his commitment to the bid.
The Ricketts family already own the Major League Baseball franchise the Chicago Cubs and their investment group already includes Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert.
The group remain in talks with several other potential investors as they look to gain control of the club over the coming weeks.
There has been much controversy over the Ricketts family’s interest in Chelsea after racist comments made in historic emails by Joe Ricketts were made public.
The 80-year-old is not involved in the bid to buy Chelsea – but Chelsea Supporters Trust have revealed the majority of their members are not in favor of the Ricketts bid for their club.
Chelsea fans’ statement
In a statement released last week, the trust said: “Yesterday (April 1), we conducted a snap survey of our membership.
“We asked our membership whether, based on information in the public domain as of April 1, they had confidence that the Ricketts family would run an inclusive and successful club, and we asked whether they supported the Ricketts family’s bid.
“72% of those who responded do not currently have confidence that the Ricketts family would run an inclusive and successful club, with 5% believing they would.
“Similarly, 77% of members who responded do not support the Ricketts family bid for Chelsea and 3% of respondents are in support.
“It is essential that the new owners of Chelsea FC have the confidence of the supporter base and demonstrate an understanding of the values that we stand for.
“At present, it is clear that our membership neither supports nor has confidence in the Ricketts family’s bid for the club. This is reflective of wider concerns articulated by large, vocal sections of Chelsea’s supporter base.
“The CST Board is guided by our membership, and thus we do not currently believe it is in the best interests of our members for the Ricketts family’s bid to succeed.”
What the Ricketts have said to Chelsea fans
In response to the comments, Tom Ricketts said: “Over the past fortnight, our bid team has met with several supporter groups to explain our vision for Chelsea football club. In those meetings, and by letter to all groups, we have shared a set of specific commitments we will make to fans, if our bid is successful.
“We believe these are far-reaching and certainly include an absolute commitment on the part of the Ricketts family and the bid team to put diversity and inclusion at the heart of the club.
“We look forward to more meetings – including with the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust – over the coming days and to making a public reiteration of our values and commitments.”
The Ricketts family and Griffin are believed to have traveled back to the United States on Wednesday as they wait for further news over their bid for the Blues.