U.K. Top 50 law firm Simmons & Simmons is advising Chelsea Football Club as it negotiates with series of bidders on its sale, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.
Simmons is advising on the sale, while sports specialist Northridge Law is also providing advice to the club, according to two people. One person familiar with the situation added that Taylor Wessing is advising the Chelsea pitch owners.
Chelsea F.C. was put up for sale after owner and Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the U.K. government as part of its response to the war in Ukraine.
Bidders vying for the Premier League club have until April 11 to table a bid, according to reports.
Latham & Watkins is advising the frontrunner bidder, a consortium comprising L.A. Dodgers part-owner Todd Boehly, the Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss and former City law firm leader Jonathan Goldstein, according to two people with knowledge of the bidding process.
Goldstein spent over 14 years at Olswang, now part of CMS, as both partner and then chief executive for nearly a decade. He is currently CEO at private investment firm Cain International which currently manages nearly $11 billion in assets, according to his LinkedIn.
Longstanding Chelsea F.C. adviser Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom dropped the club and owner Abramovich as clients just before the U.K. government put sanctions on the Russian oligarch, a person familiar with the matter said earlier in March.
Simmons and Northridge did not respond to requests for comment. Taylor Wessing did not provide a comment in time for publication. Chelsea F.C. declined to comment.
Meanwhile, several other law firms are advising the three other reported bidders.
It came as the global legal industry experienced a pushback on its links to the Russian state following the country’s invasion of Ukraine on March 24.
All major international law firms with offices in Russia have shut their operations, with many ditching major state-backed clients in recent weeks too.