he Chelsea Supporters’ Trust have slammed the Ricketts family’s bid to buy the European champions after raising concerns about their ability to lead an “inclusive and successful club”.
This is the first time the Trust has publicly questioned the owners of the Chicago Cubs baseball team, who have faced a backlash from fans on social media.
A “NoToRicketts” hashtag was used to garner numbers against Americans. The campaign focuses on historic racist emails sent by family patriarch Joe Ricketts.
He is not involved in Chelsea’s bid and has been condemned by members of his own family for his comments.
On Friday, the Ricketts were waiting to hear if they had been shortlisted in the race to buy out Roman Abramovich alongside Sir Martin Broughton and Todd Boehly’s consortium.
But their chances weren’t helped by fan opposition. This was compounded by a statement from the Trust, which met with the family this week.
He said: “It is essential that the new owners of the club have the confidence of the supporter base and demonstrate an understanding of the values we stand for.
“That is why the strength of feeling towards the Ricketts family bid on the part of Chelsea supporters cannot and must not be ignored.
“CSE is grateful to the Ricketts family for meeting with us this week. We challenged them on every point the supporters raised concerns about.
“However, our concerns about their ability to lead an inclusive and successful club on behalf of our diverse fan base across the globe have yet to be allayed.
“It is up to the Ricketts family to demonstrate how they will address supporter concerns – particularly around inclusivity, given past and recent statements from family members, and they have yet to do so. They must do so publicly and urgently.
“If they are unable to do so and gain the trust of Chelsea supporters, the CST board do not believe it would be in the interests of our members and Chelsea supporters for their bid to succeed. “