After a fan outcry after prior racist remarks, Chicago Cubs owners the Ricketts family, who are among a handful of bidders wanting to buy Premier League team Chelsea, claimed that “diversity is important to our principles.”
The outrage stemmed from released emails from 2019 in which American businessman Joe Ricketts referred to Muslims as his “”enemy.”” According to sources close to the situation, Joe has nothing to do with the Chelsea bid, which is being spearheaded by his son Tom.A #notoRicketts social media campaign has been launched, with Chelsea’s first black player, Paul Canoville, urging the club to reject Ricketts’ consortium’s offer. Chelsea is working with Raine Group, a US bank, to compile a shortlist of potential purchasers.
In a statement to Reuters, the Ricketts family said, “”Our family opposes any type of hate in the strongest possible terms.”” “”In our society, racism and Islamophobia have no place.””
“”We’ve built deep and lasting relationships with Chicago’s Muslim community, as well as all communities of colour.””
“”Our family’s values include respect for diversity and inclusiveness. If our bid for Chelsea is successful, we pledge to the club and the fans that we will actively promote these values.””The family has created a partnership with Ken Griffin, the creator of Citadel and a British businessman.
Tom Ricketts has previously communicated with Greg Hands, the Conservative Member of Parliament for Chelsea and Fulham.
The Ricketts family will travel to London this week to meet with representatives from fan groups such as the Chelsea Pitch Owners and the Chelsea Supporters’ Trust to discuss their concerns.
Raine has yet to make a decision, so there’s no guarantee the Ricketts family will make the shortlist to take Chelsea off Roman Abramovich’s hands. According to sources close to the negotiations, a three-person shortlist is in the works. Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Abramovich put Chelsea up for sale before the British government imposed sanctions on the billionaire oligarch, effectively handing the club over to him.