Roman Abramovich became the owner of the companies that control Chelsea in 2003 and has seen the Blues win 16 major trophies, though he also had four other Premier League clubs in his sights.
There were Manchester United, Tottenham, Arsenal and Liverpool on the Russian’s shortlist.
It’s explained that Abramovich’s advisers initially drew up a list of clubs across five European countries before it was whittled down to England.
There were five clubs shortlisted though the current Blues owner already owned a house in west London, making clubs in the capital a more logical choice.
Jon Smith’s book ‘The Deal’ explains that Abramovich’s camp held preliminary talks with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy, though a formal offer was never tabled.
Enquiries were made over Arsenal too, though Abramovich and his team were instructed that the Gunners were not for sale.
It’s claimed that Chelsea were more receptive though were not in a healthy position.
Abramovich reportedly met Ken Bates just once with the two men shaking on a deal to sell the club.
This article was most recently revised and updated 1 year ago