Leaked documents claim Roman Abramovich was secretly bankrolling an Eredivisie team
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Former Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich was 'secretly' bankrolling Eredivisie side Vitesse Arnhem, according to leaked documents.
Abramovich oversaw an incredible period of success for Chelsea during his time in charge of the club, from 2003 to 2022, a period never seen before in west London.
The Russian was essentially forced to sell the Premier League giants in the wake of the fall out from Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
There was some uncertainty at Stamford Bridge as the club waited to be sold, with some reports claiming the billionaire could have sent them into administration if he wished.
According to reports last year, the former Chelsea owner went and bought Turkish side Goztepe FC, following his sale of the English club, but they later refuted that.
But now, according to the Guardian, it turns out that Abramovich had been helping to bankroll Dutch side Vitesse, whilst owner of the Blues.
The paper, and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, have seen leaked documents from the Oligarch files showing £102.8 million in 'secret funding,' from Abramovich for the 2010 takeover of the Eredivisie side by Georgian former footballer Merab Jordania.
Jordania had described the Russian as a friend following the takeover but all parties denied that there had been any involvement from the Chelsea owner.
Fellow Russian businessman Alexander Chigirinsky took over from Jordania in 2013, leading to more questions about whether or not Abramovich was involved.
In 2014, the former Vitesse owner claimed he side hadn't been strengthened to reach the Champions League because "London didn’t want that."
Vitesse and Chelsea had a strong relationship, with the English side regularly sending young talent on loan to the Netherlands, to get them ready for first team football.
Nemanja Matic, Mason Mount and Armando Broja were amongst the most successful of the players to temporarily join the club known as FC Hollywood upon Rhine."
During 10 years as a Chelsea player, becoming the longest serving player at the club, Brazilian forward Lucas Piazon also spent time in Holland.