It’s clear there’s a growing disconnect between football club owners and fans

The passion exhibited on the terraces does not extend to the boardroom, writes Chris Blackhurst

Billionaire Todd Boehly partnered US private equity firm Clearlake Capital to buy Chelsea for £4.25bn in May

At Chelsea’s football ground they are closing the luxury gym. It’s part of the Stamford Bridge stadium complex and was used by players, management and, for a membership fee, by some outsiders.

Until he sold the club, Roman Abramovich is said to have liked to work out there. Its shutting is hardly a big deal, but does tell you something about the difference in approach between the Russian oligarch and Chelsea’s new owners. Abramovich treated Chelsea as an indulgence, not as a money-making enterprise.

That’s not how the new guard, led by US tycoon Todd Boehly, regard Chelsea. As the new Premier League season begins, it’s instructive to explore the mindset of Boehly and his ilk. Yet again, as the matches and months unfold, we will be treated to the usual angst and wailing from supporters up and down the land that their proprietor is hopeless, that not enough cash is being spent on the team, and that the passion exhibited on the terraces does not extend to the boardroom.

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