Chelsea has cost Abramovich £1billion
Published 22:31 31/01/12 By Martin Lipton
Roman Abramovich's Chelsea experiment has cost the Russian more than £1BILLION, it has been confirmed.
Just hours before the transfer window shut and Andre Villas-Boas side played at Swansea, Chelsea picked a good day to bury bad news as they announced another huge financial loss.
The Stamford Bridge outfit happily trumpeted "record turnover" of £222.million for the year to the end of June 2011.
But the key figures were a loss of £67.7m, down slightly on the 2010 numbers but still meaning Abramovich has lost £630m since buying the club from Ken Bates in 2003.
When the decision of the Russian billionaire to convert £340m of loans into equity is taken into account, it means Abramovich has spent around £970m.
That figure, though, comes before this season's signings of Juan Mata, Romelu Lukaka, Thibaut Courtois, Raul Meireles, January's captures of Gary Cahill and Kevin De Bruyne - some £70m - irrespective of the actual source of the £13m compensation pay-off to secure Villas-Boas' exit from Porto.
It means Abramovich's funding of the Stamford Bridge club has gone through the £1billion barrier, explaining the club's insistence that it was seeking to meet UEFA's Financial Fair Play provisions designed to prevent clubs from running huge losses.
Transfer fees, such as the British record £50m capture of Fernando Torres a year ago, are "amortised" - in simple terms, divided by - the entire length of the player's contract.
The latest figures put greater pressure on Villas-Boas to secure a Champions League place and the £40m-plus of income that goes with it.
Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck said: "The club is focused on complying with the requirements of Uefa's financial fair play regulations while maintaining its ability to challenge for major trophies. We would expect this to be reflected in our results for the current financial year."
Chief executive Ron Gourlay added: "Achieving a record level of turnover is satisfying given the economic background against which we are operating."