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Option to stay offered to Granovskaia, Buck; Clearlake co-founder set to join Chelsea as ‘active director’ — reports

Power not so overwhelming

Chelsea v Crystal Palace: The Emirates FA Cup Semi-Final Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Should the Todd Boehly consortium be able to figure the necessary financial details in order to finalize their acquisition of Chelsea Football Club — only the exact method of dealing with the £1.5b debt seems to be only true sticking point at the moment — we will then need to start figuring out more mundane things, such as who’s going to be in charge of what behind the scenes.

According to the Financial Times, who briefly summarize the debt issue as one relating mostly to a “hefty tax bill” (if forgiven) or the logistics of satisfying a “frozen” debt without paying it to Abramovich (if repaid), both Marina Granovskaia and Bruce Buck “have been offered the option to stay in place under Boehly’s ownership”.

This is to ensure continuity, especially during this transition period, as had been surmised before, with the pair seen as “important figures in the club’s success” — though nothing has been “formally” agreed yet, and they could both still walk away.

Presumably a lot will depend on what their specific roles may be going forward. Boehly himself is set to take over running “day-to-day operations”, while CBS reported earlier that Clearlake Capital co-founder Behdad Eghbali will be an “active director” (so more than just the moneybags?). Buck, the current chairman, and Granovskaia, no longer as the Emperor’s Hand, would have to filter in underneath them now, I’d guess.

Another potential problem with them staying could be the optics of their long-term association with Roman Abramovich. While this is not an objection that’s been raised before, it is now since we’re truly just being tossed around on stormy seas by politicians’ whims these days.

“Any continuity with the Abramovich regime at Chelsea is certainly an unsettling development. There needs to be clarity surrounding the process to ensure that everything is being done to the letter.”

-Julian Knight, DCMS chair; source: Financial Times

AS Monaco sporting director Paul Mitchell was a name floated as potential replacement for Granovskaia if she chooses not to stay.

There’s no word on what fate may away Petr Čech, the current technical director advisor, but his role may be the least affected by this ownership transition.

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