Chelsea make surprise £76m sale amid Premier League punishment worry and FFP points deduction fear

Chelsea corner flag
Chelsea continue to tread a fine line with Premier League FFP rules -Credit:Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Chelsea's accounts for 2022/23, which had a bottom line of a £90.1million loss, were boosted by the sale of hotel buildings. It comes with the Blues facing plenty of financial questions following a period of mass spending and change at the club.

The figures, which were released in full publicly on Friday, April 12, show a breakdown of the incoming and outgoing costs. Alongside a thorough exploration into transfers to and from Stamford Bridge, the report also detailed unexpected infrastructure changes.

Included in the 'strategic report', the statement explains that, "during the year the Group commenced a review and restructure of its real estate portfolio resulting in the sale of the hotel buildings owned by the Group to BlueCo 22 Properties Limited, a fellow subsidiary of the intermediate parent company, BlueCo 22 Limited. This resulted in a profit on disposal of fixed assets of £76.5milllion to the Group. "

Despite the sale of the hotels - which were only to fellow Todd Boehly-Clearlake Capital consortium ran BlueCo - Chelsea are still expected to push the line close for the next period of profitability and sustainability regulation (PSRs) checks. The club were not found to have been guilty of overstepping the mark for the rolling three-year mark ending in June 2023.

Unlike Everton and Nottingham Forest - as well as Sheffield United and Leicester City - Chelsea have not been accused of breaching the allowed loss-making threshold of £105million across three years. That figure changes with each season spent outside the top division, not that this is relevant for Chelsea.

The Blues will be up against it to do the same in the coming year though after making an overall loss of £90million-plus for the third year in a row. Although the figure for 2022/23 is £30million better off that in 2021/22 - the last to be overseen by Roman Abramovich - it is still a worry moving forward, especially as the league moves towards UEFA's squad cost ratio rules.

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Boehly-Clearlake are now expected to once more pursue widescale player sales in the summer - ideally before June 30 - to ensure compliance with PSRs. This could come via the departure of academy talent such as Conor Gallagher, Ian Maatsen, Trevoh Chalobah, and Armando Broja.

The £76.5million made from the hotel sales will not be included, it is thought, with asset sales to related parties so far being excluded from calculations in the EFL. Similarly, costs relating the academy, women's team, community projects, or stadium are not counted for against the PSR bottom line either.

The report continues to state that Chelsea are on course to remain within the financial parameters despite growing concern within the fanbase. "The football club continues to balance success on the field together with the financial imperatives of complying with Uefa and Premier League financial regulations," it writes.

"The club has complied with these since their inception in 2012 and expects to do so in the foreseeable future.” Later on in the report there is also a reference to the ongoing investigation of missing financial details in the Abramovich era. "During the prior period, the company self-reported to relevant football authorities certain legal matters concerning historical football transactions.

"The Director's acknowledge the ongoing review by the football authorities in relation to these matters. Depending on the outcome of any review, there could be future liabilities that cannot be quantified as at the date of these financial statements."