SIR JIM RATCLIFFE is not giving up on his Chelsea bid without a fight and has begged the club to consider his offer.
The British petrochemicals mogul, 69, has vowed to improve Stamford Bridge as it exists rather than build a new stadium as Roman Abramovich had planned to.
Boehly has reportedly been named as the preferred bidder for Chelsea despite a last-gasp £4billion bid from Ratcliffe.
And Boehly’s team were told they had been granted a “period of exclusivity” to discuss the final terms and conditions of a takeover package.
However Russian Oligarch Roman Abramovich is reportedly “attempting to renege on his promise to write off a £1.6 billion debt”.
This is despite the 55-year-old saying he would NOT be asking for any loans to be repaid when he put the club up for sale.
Which could see any future deal between Boehly and the West London outfit fall through.
Or in a worst case scenario, Chelsea could LOSE their Premier League status.
Meanwhile, Blues boss Thomas Tuchel has claimed that Chelsea are stronger without Lukaku and is ‘open’ to selling the Belgian this summer.
Keep up to date with all of the latest gossip from the takeover in our live blog…
Ratcliffe Chelsea plea
Chelsea bidder Sir Jim Ratcliffe has told the Raine Group not to brush off his offer to buy the club.
The US-based company are handling the sale of the Blues, and Ratcliffe wants the group to factor in that his company is British and want the best for the club.
Sir Jim said, reported by the BBC: “My message to Raine is don’t discount our offer.
“We are British and have great intentions for Chelsea. If I was Raine I wouldn’t close any door”
Todd Boehly takeover reminder
Los Angeles Dodgers owner Todd Boehly is “very close” to taking over at Chelsea with Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s late rival bid allegedly “not under consideration”.
That is according to CBS Sports journalist Ben Jacobs, who claims the US-based bank Raine, who are handling the takeover for departing owner Roman Abramovich, are not exploring any other “alternative options”.
Jacobs tweeted: “Boehly-Clearlake takeover of Chelsea is now very close to completion. Raine sources tell me Wednesday talks were ‘highly productive and no alternative options are being explored’.
“Sources within Boehly-Clearlake say they’ve remained ‘calm’ and are confident they will own”
Credit: GETTY IMAGES
Man of the Match
Mason Mount has been Chelsea’s best performer this season, stats have revealed.
The England star has received six Man of the Match awards, according to Who’s Scored.
Behind Mount is Hakim Ziyech, Jorginho, and Reece James, who all have won the prize three times, the report added.
Emerson Palmieri Chelsea return
Emerson Palmieri will return to Chelsea this summer.
The defender is on loan at Lyon but is set to jet back to London when the season ends.
But his return to Stamford Bridge will be fleeting as Juventus are keen to sign him, according to TuttoSport.
Tuchel ‘open to Lukaku sale’
Thomas Tuchel reckons Chelsea are stronger without Romelu Lukaku in the side.
The Blues are a more ‘potent force’ when Lukaku’s on the bench, according to ESPN.
Which is why Tuchel’s open to offloading the Belgium international to spend the money on other areas that need strengthening, the report also claims.
Dybala mobbed by Juve pleas
Chelsea transfer target Paulo Dybala has been urged not to join Inter Milan by Juventus fans.
Dybala was signing autographs ahead of Juve training when fans bombarded him with pleas of: “Please don’t join Inter,” and, “Why are you going to Inter?,” Football Italia reported.
The hot-shot striker simply smiled but didn’t respond to the demands of the Juve supporters.
Hak some of that
Chelsea have been dealt a huge blow in their pursuit of PSG ace Achraf Hakimi.
The Blues have been tracking the right-back for a while.
But he’s got no intentions of leaving PSG anytime soon, according to his agent Alexandro Camano.
Camano said, via Fabrizio Romano: “He’s happy there, we have 4 years left on our contract with PSG.
“Achraf’s young and wants to continue growing at Paris Saint Germain.”
Chelsea issued top-four warning
Chelsea could lose their spot in the league to Arsenal.
Chelsea are in third at the moment, but Gunners legend Michael Thomas reckons his former club can pip the Blues for the position.
He said to CaughtOffside: “Chelsea are in a tough position because they had third wrapped up for so long that they took got too relaxed and now it’s looking very open again.
“I do think they will still qualify for the Champions League, but as you can see, it can quite easily change at any game week.
“As for Arsenal, they should just be looking to win all their remaining games and see where that leaves them.”
Chelsea’s European might claims
Chelsea have been named as one of the six clubs stronger than Juventus in Europe.
That’s the opinion of Juve boss Max Allegri.
Allegri told Football Italia: “Juventus have reached the Final twice in the last 10 years.
“Of course, we have changed a lot and we can’t always obtain the same results.
“I’ve said it many times. Six teams are much stronger than others: Real Madrid, PSG, Bayern Munich, Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool.”
Boehly close to Chelsea takeover
Todd Boehly’s Chelsea takeover is reportedly “close” with Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s late rival bid allegedly “not under consideration”.
CBS Sports journalist Ben Jacobs has offered a fresh update on Twitter – and it looks to be good news for the Stamford Bridge faithful.
He wrote: “Boehly-Clearlake takeover of Chelsea is now very close to completion. Raine sources tell me Wednesday talks were ‘highly productive and no alternative options are being explored’.
“Sources within Boehly-Clearlake say they’ve remained ‘calm’ and are confident they will own #CFC.”
Havertz and Liverpool clash explained
Liverpool star Harvey Elliot has opened up on his square-up with Kai Havertz in the Carabao Cup final.
He said to Soccerbible about the incident: “To see Trent and Havertz square up… you’ve just got to back your teammates at the end of the day. You’re there and you fight with them.
“That thing with Havertz was just the heat of the moment; emotions were high for both teams as we both wanted to win.
“Then obviously the penalty shootout came and that’s when you let it all out.”
Merson on Chelsea ownership
Chelsea’s ownership situation needs to be resolved so the club can move on, according to Paul Merson.
Merson told Sky Sports: “They’ve [Chelsea] got to sell the club before they do anything else. Until they sell the club, they can’t bring anyone in.
“If you went and bought a house for £300,000 tomorrow it would take three months, now we’re talking about £4bn. It’s not going to be done quickly – it’s worrying really.
“It needs to be done before the end of the season or they’re in danger of getting left behind.
“They’ve got to bring players in, they’re behind Man City and Liverpool, we’ve seen that. They’ll want to bring players in and offload players.”
Chelsea ownership plans
Jim Ratcliffe claims owning Chelsea isn’t about making money – but to put the club on par with Europe’s finest.
He added in his chat with the BBC: “We’re not interested in making money out of Chelsea. The investment in Chelsea is a long-term thing.
“Can we run that club really well and turn it into one of the finest clubs in Europe?
“I don’t think it has consistently been where you would put a Real Madrid, Barcelona or Bayern Munich.
“It is a notch below Liverpool and Manchester City. It is about consistency.”
Ratcliffe makes Boehly claim
Jim Ratcliffe has tore rival Todd Boehly’s business plan to shreds.
Ratfcliffe has emerged as a late opponent to Boehly’s bid to buy Chelsea, and the Brit has claimed to have found holes in the LA Dodgers owner’s stratergy.
Ratcliffe explained to the BBC: “I spent quite a few years in the world of venture capital and private equity, which is where I partly learned my trade of buying businesses.
“It’s a simple business: you persuade a pension fund or an insurance company to give you money, which you manage with the intention of increasing in value, and if you do that you get a share of the profits.
“So your focus is always on, ‘How do I make that money grow?’, and it’s typically a five-year time horizon — and their [Boehly’s] main funder is private equity and venture capital.
“In America, the big sports clubs won’t allow those people to come in and buy the clubs, but in the UK you can.”
Court we can do it
Ex-Chelsea star Thibaut Courtois reckons Real Madrid’s schedule could give them the edge against Liverpool in the Champions League final.
Real stopper Courtois told beIN Sports: ““Liverpool are playing really amazingly this season, so it will be a really hard game.
“The only good thing for us is that we aren’t playing anymore for anything, we can rest really well for that game, whereas they are playing for the Premier League, so for them it will be a bit harder.
“But we just need to keep training well and do our best and hopefully win it.”
Broja transfer race heats up
West Ham are planning a move for Chelsea striker Armando Broja this summer following his loan spell at Southampton, JACK ROSSER WRITES.
The Saints also discussed a permanent deal in January – but pushed any move until the summer before sanctions put a stop on any Chelsea sales.
No transfers can happen before Chelsea’s ownership crisis is solved but, once resolved, SunSport understands that Saints could quickly tie up a deal if they are willing to offer Broja similar wages to teammates Che Adams and Adam Armstrong.
But the Hammers are set to rival Southampton and could win the tussle with the offer of European football. Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund have also registered an interest in the past.
Agbonlahor’s Champions League support shock
Gabby Agbonlahor spoke of his shock after witnessing English fans celebrating Man City’s Champions League demise against Real Madrid.
And Chelsea supporters were among the culprits, Agbonlahor revealed.
The retired striker said on talkSPORT: “Whenever Real Madrid scored, 99 percent of the bar, there could have been about 1000 people in the bar, jumping up and celebrating for Real Madrid which baffles me.
“I spoke to a couple of them around me who said to me ‘why are you not celebrating?’ and I said ‘I’m supporting the English team’.
“There were a few Man United fans, Chelsea, other teams, but it really disappointed me, strange because you want to support the English teams and get an all English final, it was strange for me to see that.”
Hazard could bring Chelsea cash
Chelsea will be hoping Real Madrid can topple Liverpool in the Champions League final and net themselves a tidy windfall.
However, they won’t be the only ones celebrating if they overcome Jurgen Klopp’s Reds.
Chelsea will be laughing too thanks to a clause in Eden Hazard’s transfer deal from back in 2019.
The Blues accepted an £88.5million offer from Los Blancos for the winger – with the deal having significant extra payments that could take the full price to a massive £130MILLION.
And one of those included an extra cash windfall should Madrid taste Champions League success while Hazard is at the club.
Chelsea have already benefited in the past, scooping nearly £20m in 2020 as Madrid claimed the LaLiga title and qualified for the Champions League.
Tchou and go
Chelsea are one of the clubs being linked with Aurelien Tchouameni this summer.
And the Blues’ pursuit has been given a boost as Tchouameni is heading for the Monaco exit when the season wraps up, according to RMC Sport.
But the Blues will also have to contend with competition from Champions League finalist Real Madrid and Liverpool.
‘Rudiger will be a huge loss’
Paul Merson claims Antonio Rudiger will be a huge loss for Chelsea whilst comparing the German to former Blues centre-back David Luiz.
Merson said: “Rudiger will be a massive loss, I can’t express how big that’s going to be.
“If they played a four at the back, he wouldn’t be missed.
“He can only go and play somewhere in a three, for me, he reminds me of a David Luiz – he’ll go and chase the ball, close down, go out of position – but in a three he can go and take that chance.”
All hail king Cesar
Petr Cech has hailed Chelsea skipper Cesar Azpilicueta as ‘captain material.’
Cech told Chelsea’s media: “When it comes to captain material, there is something in the player, and with experience, it comes out.
“One thing that has always struck me about Azpi is that he is an honest player, he goes on the pitch and does his best, no matter what.
“He plays with the right commitment, with the right attitude, with his full heart. This is what makes him consistent.
“He is a very good trainer. He prepares the same way as he plays, and that’s the key to his level of performance. You know what you get.
“He might occasionally make a mistake like everybody does, he might not always have a spectacular game, but you always know you will get a high level of performance from him.
“This is what is precious.”
Lukaku tipped for Chelsea stay
Paul Merson reckons Chelsea have no choice but to keep hold of disgruntled striker Romelu Lukaku due to their financial woes.
The Blues spent £97.5m on the Belgian but Merson fears they’ll struggle to recoup half of his fee.
Merson told Sky Sports: “Chelsea haven’t got much choice but to keep going with Romelu Lukaku.
“They’re getting sold, they haven’t got any money, they can’t be buying people for £100m and selling them for half that.”
Wannabe Chelsea owner’s plea
Wannabe Chelsea owner Jim Ratcliffe has told the Raine Group not to brush off his offer to buy the club.
Raine are handling the sale of the Blues, and Ratcliffe wants the group to factor in that his company is British and want the best for the club.
He said, reported by the BBC: “My message to Raine is don’t discount our offer.
“We are British and have great intentions for Chelsea. If I was Raine I wouldn’t close any door.”
Declan Rice’s Europa League vow
Chelsea transfer target Declan Rice has vowed to give everything for West Ham in the Europa League final.
Rice told West Ham’s media: “Our mood is fantastic and it has been all season.
“Our mood hasn’t dropped, we’ve been really positive and really confident. We’re obviously one goal down in the tie but, for us, we’re positive.
“We lost the first game to Sevilla and the first game against Lyon was only a draw, so I feel like you’ll see the best of us in the second game, one hundred percent.
“I don’t know [why we have played well in the second legs], but I always feel like in the first games you’re always looking at the opposition and sizing them up.
“We had plenty of opportunities to score in the first game, their ‘keeper made some fantastic saves and we hit the woodwork loads of times, so we’re going to come here, really attack and try and get the job done.”
Chelsea stars want contract discussions
Several Chelsea stars have been waiting for months to discuss new contracts with the clubs.
That’s the claims made by transfer expert Fabrizio Romano who also reckons Mason Mount wants to stay at Stamford Bridge despite links to Liverpool.
Romano told CaughtOffside: “There’s been some speculation about Mason Mount’s situation at Chelsea, but I don’t think Blues fans have too much to worry about, despite the uncertainty surrounding the club ownership.
“Mason Mount’s priority has always been to stay at Chelsea. There are no doubts about his commitment, but certainly his situation is to be monitored like those of Marcos Alonso, Jorginho and N’Golo Kante.
“In fact, all these players have been waiting for months to discuss the extension of the contract with Chelsea but there have been no changes; the sanctions have slowed down the contract renewal process.”
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