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Chelsea Transfer News: Strasbourg president defends BlueCo – Todd Boehly empire ‘not a pyramid scheme’

Tom Weber

  • Updated: 11 Mar 2024 15:25 GMT
  • 4 min read
Todd Boehly, Behdad Eghbali, Chelsea

Strasbourg president Marc Keller has launched into an impassionate defence of BlueCo’s controversial ownership of the club.

The Ligue 1 side were taken over by Todd Boehly’s BlueCo consortium in 2023, just a little over a year after the American and his business partner Behdad Eghbali had acquired Chelsea. Already at the time, BlueCo’s involvement with Strasbourg came under fire from fans.

Things have only become worse since, with the biggest footballing representative of France’s unique Alsace region languishing just a point above the relegation playoff spot in Ligue 1. Though Strasbourg spent big in the summer, they only brought in young players – in line with Chelsea’s transfer policy – and the side’s lack of inexperience has turned out to be a major problem.

The issues were exacerbated after a dreadful January window that only saw midfielder Andrey Santos arrive on loan from the Blues, further convincing Racing fans that their club is being turned into a Chelsea farm team.

While it’s undeniably true that Strasbourg have a host of exciting players, chief among them Habib Diarra, who may have a future at Stamford Bridge, the fact of the matter is that this season could end in disaster unless their fortunes improve, the side currently winless in eight Ligue 1 games.

Habib Diarra
© IMAGO – Habib Diarra

President hits back

Now, club president Marc Keller has hit back at the criticism and claims that he sold the club’s soul to BlueCo. Speaking to L’Equipe, Keller insisted that the investment was needed to modernise Strasbourg’s stadium, the Stade de la Meinau. “The arrival of BlueCo was essential to allow Le Racing to be more competitive in the coming years.”

“We still have two and a half years of work… it’s better to be well-supported, and we are. We’ll lose ticketing revenue next year and put around €20 million back into the stadium.”

Keller also defended the club’s new transfer policy. “We had a team with an average age of 28 and we wanted to go down to 23-24…We were able to secure young talent courted with the resources provided by BlueCo. Players with potential are BlueCo’s policy, but it’s also ours.”

Finally, the president rejected claims that it is Behdad Eghbali who, despite his limited understanding of the football industry, is in charge of Racing’s affairs. “No [he doesn’t run the club]…I speak with several people from BlueCo, including Eghbali who I speak to regularly on the phone. Change is scary and it’s a big change…[but] we are not in a pyramid scheme, Chelsea is a ‘brother’ club, not above us, but next to us.”

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