Chelsea respond to claims Abramovich wants to sell the club

Premier League- Chelsea vs Crystal Palace

Premier League- Chelsea vs Crystal Palace

Chelsea owner, Roman Abramovich, has hired NY bank Raine Group in preparation for selling off the club, according to The Sunday Times.

The report says that the oligarch's directors have appointed advisers from merchant bank Raine Group to conduct a strategic review at Chelsea.

The newspaper also states Abramovich rejected an offer for a minority stake in the club from Silver Lake Partners, an American private equity firm.

But sources at Chelsea have told ESPN FC that, just as when news of Ratcliffe's interest first surfaced earlier this year, Abramovich has no intention of selling Chelsea and remains as determined as ever to back the club's push for major silverware in the years to come.

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Abramovich's situation has become complicated in the United Kingdom after he was denied a working Visa in May.

Chelsea needs $1 billion to build a planned new stadium but the project is on hold for the time being as it is understood that Abramovich is not willing to invest heavily in a country that has denied him a Visa, according to The Sunday Times report.

Abroamovich apparently does not now intend to re-apply for a British visa.

Experts have suggested that pulling his investment could be the ultimate powerplay with the Home Office over his visa.

In 2007 he reached a £150 million divorce settlement with his second-wife Irina, in what was the fourth largest divorce bill in history.

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