Chelsea are looking to begin their multi-club project under new owner Todd Boehly with the acquisition of Portimonense, a fourth-tier side in Portugal, according to reports.
Boehly recently floated the idea at a conference, telling those listening that “We’ve talked about having a multi-club model. I would love to continue to build out the footprint.
There are different countries where there are advantages to having a club. Red Bull does a really good job at Leipzig and at Salzburg, both of which are playing in the Champions League, so they’ve figured out how to make that work. You have Man City that has a very big network of clubs.”
“I think the challenge that Chelsea has now, or one of them, is that when you have 18-, 19-, 20-year-old superstars, you can loan them out to other clubs but you put their development in someone else’s hands.
I think that our goal is to make sure we can show pathways for our young superstars to get on to the Chelsea pitch while getting them real game time. To me the way to do that is through another club somewhere in a really competitive league in Europe.”
Now, he is set to get his wish, or at least the start of it, according to the London Evening Standard.
“Super-agent Jorge Mendes has been consulted over clubs to consider in his homeland and discussions have been held with Portimonense, who are fourth in Portugal’s top flight”, they explain.
“Chelsea’s owners are also exploring the possibility of acquiring a club in Belgium, while they have been turned down by French side Sochaux and Brazilian giants Santos”, it is added.
The Blues are keen to add a Brazilian side to their group in particular in order to make gaining work permits more straightforward for talented youngsters, along with offering high-level loan opportunities.
They are not alone either. Both Arsenal and Liverpool are also interested in following a similar satellite club model following the success of the City Group since its induction.
With the loan system now having been minimised by FIFA and UEFA, a multi-club model could become the next vogue trend for clubs to take up in order to hand themselves the best chance of success.