When did Abramovich buy Chelsea

The Abramovich case: where did Chelsea get the mysterious money from?

In the 98 years before it was taken over by Roman Abramowitsch in 2003, Chelsea FC won a total of eleven titles. There are now 28. But who is this mysterious Russian anyway?

The business magazine "Forbes" lists Roman Abramowitsch with a fortune of 11.9 billion US dollars on the 107th place of the richest people in the world. More remarkable than his account balance, however, is the puzzling rise of the 52-year-old Russian, who already lost his mother and father as a child.

Reports of his first big deals contradict each other, and both Ukhta University and Moscow's Gubkin Institute, where he allegedly studied as a young adult, deny that Abramovich was ever enrolled with them.

It seems clear that Abramowitsch, who was born in Saratov in 1966, benefited in an incredible way from the collapse of the Soviet Union and the associated establishment of the market economy. Together with his business partner Boris Berezovsky, a close confidante of the then Russian President Boris Yeltsin, he succeeded in taking over the state-owned Sibneft Group, now known as Gazprom, during the coupon privatization in the mid-1990s.

How this takeover, worth 100 million dollars, was financially possible for the then 30-year-old is not revealed.

«No one can legally have gotten so rich in Russia in such a short time»

Berezovsky fell out of favor under President Vladimir Putin and fled into exile in Great Britain in 2000. Abramowitsch fell out with his former business partner and bought his shares in the company from him. In court, Berezovsky later argued that Abramovich had blackmailed him and forced him to sell under threats.

"Nobody in Russia can legally have become so rich in such a short time," Vladimir Putin defended his tough line against newly rich oligarchs at the time. In person he meant Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who remarkably had earned his money in exactly the same period of time as Abramovich and Berezovsky. Khodorkovsky was arrested in 2003 and convicted of embezzlement and tax evasion.

But Abramovich correctly anticipated and escaped prosecution. When he realized he was about to face an investigation, he sold his stake in Sibneft back to the state in 2005 for $ 13.1 billion. Since then the company has been called "Gazprom".

In less than ten years he had turned 100 million, of which no one knows exactly where they came from, into 13 billion.

Dubious business

In a lengthy court case between Berezovsky and Abramovich, which ended in London in 2012, it came to light that Abramowitsch had his business "protected" in the 1990s.

Abramovich is said to have said during the proceedings that it was dangerous times for entrepreneurs at the time. People were murdered "every three days". Therefore, in addition to Berezovsky, he also hired the seedy Arkadi Patarkazishvili, who was said to have had relationships with Chechen gangsters.

He had used Berezovsky to “make himself heard” by the government and Patarkazishvili, who - just incidentally - was classified as a “criminal authority” by the Swiss Federal Police, for “things like collecting debts”.

After the two “protectors” demanded more money from Abramovich year after year, a dispute broke out between the three powerful Russians in 2001. The winner? Abramovich.

He survived everything: criminal prosecutions, the case of Yeltsin, the takeover of Putin, the dispute with Berezovsky and Patarkatsishvili - nothing could stop the now 52-year-old.

Patarkatsishvili died on February 12, 2008 in his home in England. His death was classified as "suspicious" by the British police. Berezovsky died in March 2013, a few months after losing Abramovich's trial.

In 2000 Abramovich was appointed governor of the Russian Chukotka region and has enjoyed criminal immunity ever since.

Beneficiary Chelsea

Roman Abramowitsch has been the owner of Chelsea FC since 2003. Over the past 16 years, the Russian oligarch has invested hundreds of millions of pounds in the club from England, helping the “Blues” to win 17 titles, including five English championships and winning the Champions League in 2012.

No objective conclusions should be drawn at this point. A very subjective opinion, although not necessarily truthful and admittedly extremely direct, came from the British comedian Alan Davies in 2015.

His conclusion: It's much more than a ********** club without a past, it's an eyesore for football, for London, for humanity.