After weeks of speculation, optimism and a prayer or two, it has been confirmed that Massimo Cellino is in talks to sell the club to Italian Sports media mogul Andrea Radrizzani.
Finally confirmed by Andrea Radrizzani that he is negotiating a 50-50 split of Leeds United with Massimo Cellino:https://t.co/xmFAyUiKqI— Phil Hay (@PhilHayYEP) November 28, 2016
If reports are correct Radrizzani will first buy a 50% share in the club and hopefully a 100% share in the summer.
Last week, Mr. Radrizzani was interviewed by the Straits Times in Singapore and referred to Leeds by saying:
We all expected that Mr. Radrizzani’s business associates may be involved in the deal because, as we commented in our piece ‘Who is Andrea Radrizzani?’, the businessman has strong connections with Chinese investors. However, when asked directly about involvement from his Chinese partners, Radrizzani told the Straits Times:
In my opinion, this is a positive if the deal does get finalised. The saying “too many cooks spoil the broth” can definitely be applied here and is vastly important at a football club. Radrizzani is a football fan and will have the best interests of the club at heart. He sees financial possibility with Leeds, but there’s more than that for him here too. I just wonder if investors, whose interest is money over football, would share the same values.
The details on how the sale will look are yet unconfirmed. Suggestions have been made that if we succeed in the race for promotion, Massimo Cellino may still be involved as it has been reported that he plans to keep a 50% share in the club if we get promoted. We haven’t heard confirmation of this being a part of the arrangement.
I do expect that this may be true, as Cellino will be aware of the financial benefits that come along with being in the Premier League. Hopefully, Cellino will cut ties with the club in the summer, regardless of our league status. Again, “too many cooks.”
In the short term, the initial 50% sale to Mr. Radrizzani looks like it will go ahead. However, irrespective of who has their name on the chairman’s door in January, we do know we will need to address certain vital things.
A new contract for Garry Monk is a priority. It would be a statement of intent from Andrea Radrizzani if we saw Garry Monk given a substantial contract.
The other clear priority is strengthening the squad and ensuring that the players who are currently on loan are signed permanently. I previously mentioned the need to sell Charlie Taylor, our latest Player of the Month, to fund those signings... but if Radrizzani could both keep Taylor and strengthen the team, he would instantly be taken to the hearts of the Leeds faithful, even more so than he already has.
"It is important that the deal now reaches a swift conclusion to ensure the club can make the most of the January transfer window" #lufc— Time To Go, Massimo (@TimeToGoMassimo) November 29, 2016
These points are fundamental if the club is to move forward and achieve the goals we all hope for.
None of us expect miracles. However, with the positive signs we are seeing on the pitch, a chance of also having a positive outcome off the pitch seems more realistic than ever. MOT
Note to any Leeds fans who follow me, Andrea Radrizzani is a lovely bloke and a very very smart operator. Keep your fingers crossed.— James Elliott (@jselliott09) November 29, 2016