Chelsea are trying to cut their wage bill by £80MILLION, admits co-founder of co-owners Clearlake, after turfing out a long list of big-earning stars… as club bring in £400m investment from a US firm
- It is believed that the investment could go towards potential stadium expansion
- Chelsea sold as many as 13 senior squad members either permanently or on loan
- Listen to the latest episode of Mail Sport’s podcast ‘It’s All Kicking Off!’
Chelsea are looking to cut their annual salary by around £80million ($100m), revealed one of Clearlake’s co-founders, with the club thought to be nearing a hefty investment from US Firm Ares Management.
Since the takeover from Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital in 2022, Chelsea have spent around £1billion on player transfers, with their wage bill unsurprisingly increasing amid the mass of incomings.
The club had sought to move on some squad members in the last three windows, with Kalidou Koulibaly, Kai Havertz, N’Golo Kante and Romelu Lukaku among the names leaving this summer either permanently or on loan.
Additionally, a number of English homegrown players have also been allowed to leave in order to bring in profit immediately onto the books and help counteract the long-term affects of amortisation (spreading the cost of a transfer across the number of years on a player’s contract).
However, in a bid to procure greater funds into the club, Chelsea have reportedly partnered with US alternative asset management firm Ares Management, who are set to invest a further £404m ($500m).
Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital bought Chelsea in 2022 and have since spent heavily
Romelu Lukaku is among the Chelsea stars to leave the club in the last transfer window
Kalidou Koulibaly – who had only arrived in 2022 – joined Saudi Pro League side Al-Hilal
Your browser does not support iframes.
This is largely due to the club’s owners looking to finance the expensive Stamford Bridge stadium renovations, as well as build stakes in more clubs, according to the Financial Times.
A source close to Ares’ investment described it as a ‘preferred equity deal,’ while former Chelsea director Mike Forde is believed to have played a key role in securing the deal, according to ESPN.
‘We have bought an asset that is very coveted by many other potential buyers,’ said Clearlake’s co-founder Jose Feliciano at the IPEM private equity conference in Paris.
‘Ultimately, we are extremely aligned with that supporter and fan base because the best way to make our club more valuable is to win.’
‘The team had a tough first season, our first season. We have a tremendous amount of talent.’
He added: ‘I think what we are trying to do is reduce the salary and essentially the opex [operating expenses] of the business by over $100m (£80.6m) per year.’
Stamford Bridge is currently only able to house some 40,000 fans, which is far fewer than their top six rivals Arsenal (60,700), Tottenham (62,850), Man United (74,000), Liverpool (61,370) and Man City (53,400).
The club is currently believed to be weighing up the decision whether to redevelop the current stadium, or to build a new ground entirely at Earl’s Court.
It is also thought that the investment could be used to help improve their Cobham training facility, and go towards the multi-club model that Boehly and Clearlake are believed to view as vital to the club’s future.
Kai Havertz joined Arsenal for £65million while N’Golo Kante left for Al-Ittihad in Saudi Arabia
The expansion of current ground Stamford Bridge or moving to a new site are options being considered
In addition to being hampered by the number of fans they can admit, Chelsea are still yet to secure a front-of-shirt sponsor that would surely have earned them an annual fee in the region of tens of millions.
Without the lucrative qualification of Champions League football either, Chelsea’s revenue streams took a further hit in a season of record-breaking expenditure.
While Chelsea have spent lavishly, their investment has not seen a correlating progression on the pitch, and the Blues last season finished 12th with fewer than half the points of champions Manchester City (44).
Similarly at the start of the new campaign, Mauricio Pochettino’s side have struggled for form and sit in 14th with just one win from five.
IT’S ALL KICKING OFF!
It’s All Kicking Off is an exciting new podcast from Mail Sport that promises a different take on Premier League football.
It is available on MailOnline, Mail+, YouTube, Apple Music and Spotify.
Your browser does not support iframes.
Source: Read Full Article