Robert 'Woody' Johnson & Saudi Media preparing Chelsea bids

Matt O'Connor-Simpson
Woody Johnson supported Donald Trump's presidential campaign
Woody Johnson supported Donald Trump's presidential campaign / Al Pereira/GettyImages

New York Jets owner and former American ambassador to the United Kingdom Robert 'Woody' Johnson, as well as a Saudi consortium, are said to be preparing offers to buy Chelsea.

Long-term Blues owner Roman Abramovich put the club on the market last week and is keen for a quick sale as the UK government considers further sanctions on individuals and businesses linked to the Russian regime.

A consortium led by Todd Boehly and Hansjorg Wyss and Turkish businessman Muhsin Bayrak are publicly known to be interested in Chelsea, but there are plenty of other contenders too.

As reported by ESPN, Johnson is looking to become the latest NFL owner to buy an English club with Fulham, Arsenal, Manchester United and Leeds also backed by individuals who have invested in american football.

The 74-year-old businessman lived in London during his time serving as US ambassador under Donald Trump and is said to be a keen follower of Chelsea.

In addition to Johnson's potential bid, Goal have reported that a consortium headed by Saudi Media – a fund that funds media, advertising and sports brands worldwide – are also interested.

In total, around 10 parties have expressed interest in buying the club to the Raine Group, who are handling the sale on behalf of Abramovich. The Russian is believed to want £3bn for Chelsea, but he may be forced to accept well below this in what is a buyers' market.

Abramovich is hoping to accept a bid by 15 March, though he may be forced to extend this if negotiations do not accelerate over the next week.

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