12 April 2022

Steve Pagliuca aims to keep Chelsea ‘habitual winners’ if bid is successful

12 April 2022

Steve Pagliuca has pledged to ensure Chelsea remain “habitual winners” in setting out the vision behind his bid to buy the club.

The Boston Celtics co-owner watched Thomas Tuchel’s side thump Southampton 6-0 on Saturday, and has now laid out his plans should he win the race to buy the Blues.

The four consortiums battling for the Premier League club will submit final offers to New York merchant bank Raine Group on Thursday, with Pagliuca the latest to confirm a list of pledges including plans to rebuild the Stamford Bridge stadium.

Roman Abramovich, pictured, will sell Chelsea after 19 years owning the west London club (Adam Davy/PA) (PA Wire)

“During this hugely significant week for Chelsea, we would first like to wish Thomas and the Chelsea squad the very best of luck ahead of tonight’s Champions League match against Real Madrid,” said Pagliuca.

“Having witnessed a great 6-0 win against Southampton last week, I hope to see a comeback for the ages against Real Madrid in the quarter-final second leg.

“This process has been a disconcerting time for the football club and fans.

“Throughout my life and career, my ethos has always been to operate quietly, with integrity, and let my actions and results speak loudly.

Our first focus and goal is to make strategic investments to continue competing for championships and trophies.

“However, it is imperative to clarify and assure supporters about our bid group and its commitments, to emphasize how seriously we take our potential responsibility to Chelsea.

“Our first focus and goal is to make strategic investments to continue competing for championships and trophies.

“We will support our players and managers to make sure that Chelsea are habitual winners and title contenders, whether in the Premier League, Champions League or the Women’s Super League (the only Super League we intend competing in, for the record).

“In addition, we will continue to invest in the youth academy to develop the stars of the future and we would not be in this process if we did not have an exciting and inclusive vision for Chelsea.”

Russian-Israeli billionaire Roman Abramovich put Chelsea up for sale on March 2, amid Russia’s continued invasion of Ukraine.

The 55-year-old was then sanctioned by the UK Government on March 10, with Downing Street claiming to have proven his links to Russia President Vladimir Putin.

Chelsea have been granted a special Government licence to continue operating, though under strict terms.

Abramovich cannot profit from Chelsea’s sale, but had already vowed to write off the club’s £1.5billion debt.

As well as Pagliuca, the other three contenders to buy the Blues are the Chicago Cubs-owning Ricketts family, LA Dodgers part-owner Todd Boehly and British business titan Jonathan Goldstein, and Sir Martin Broughton and Lord Sebastian Coe.

Stamford Bridge could be set for a revamp (Glyn Kirk/PA) (PA Wire)

Pagliuca has now revealed his plans for Chelsea should he make a success of his takeover bid.

“Our second focus will be to continue to cherish and preserve the legacy and traditions of the club,” said Pagliuca.

“In over 20 years of ownership of the Boston Celtics, we have not once considered changing the name, colours, or logo of the club. This is our guarantee to Chelsea fans.

“Not only are we committed to remaining at the home of Chelsea, Stamford Bridge, but we are inspired to renovate or redevelop the stadium.

“Chelsea is a world-class team, in a world-class city, with world-class fans: it deserves a world-class stadium.

“Our third focus will be having a significant positive impact in the community.

“We believe passionately that clubs have a social responsibility, and we will continue to support the Chelsea Foundation and its impressive work in education, health and well-being, and diversity and inclusion both locally and globally.

“Chelsea should be the pride of London for its on and off-field accomplishments. It has fans all over the world and we will not tolerate bullying, anti-Semitism, racism, or any other form of hateful speech – and neither should our fans.

“Ultimately, fans will see our commitment and, we hope, trust us to stay true to our values on and off the pitch. We understand the responsibilities that come with such an important sporting institution and hold ourselves accountable to the fans.

“Later this week, we will submit a substantial and credible bid proposal – one that we expect will meet the respective requirements and regulations of the Premier League, UK Government and UEFA – and we pledge to honour our commitment to credibility and good guardianship of Chelsea Football Club from day one.”

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