As reported by The Guardian, The Dutch Football Association is set to launch a fresh investigation into alleged financial ties between former Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich and Eredivisie side Vitesse Arnhem.
The Guardian and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (TBIJ) previously uncovered leaked documents showing that Abramovich secretly funded the 2010 takeover of the Dutch Football club and bankrolled it for years during the period in which he still owned Chelsea. Furthermore, documents show Abramovich secretly poured in €100m of funding into Vitesse between 2010 and 2016.
This fresh investigation marks the Dutch FA’s third attempt to uncover the funding of Vitesse and any ties to Abramovich. The two previous inquiries took place in 2010 and 2014-15, however concluded that the Oligarch had no managerial influence over the club and that the club was being bankrolled by a British Virgin Islands company named Marindale Trading Ltd.
The documents revealed by The Guardian and TBIJ show that Marindale Trading Ltd was funded by a chain of loans originating from two other companies in the British Virgin Islands. These companies belonged to two Cyprus-based trusts, which Abramovich was the sole beneficiary of. These discoveries uncovered in the leaked documents have prompted the Dutch FA’s new inquiries.
Both Vitesse and Chelsea have continously denied Abramovich being linked to the funding of the Dutch side over the years, despite the two clubs having a close relationship with one another during Abramovich’s ownership- shown by their transfer dealings.
According to Transfermarkt, Chelsea loaned out a total 29 senior and youth players to Vitesse between 2010 and 2021, including the likes of Mason Mount, Armando Broja and Nemanja Matic.