11:07 GMT +323 October 2019
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    In this file photo dated Saturday, Dec. 19, 2015, Chelsea soccer club owner Roman Abramovich sits in his box before the English Premier League soccer match between Chelsea and Sunderland at Stamford Bridge stadium in London. Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich has received Israeli citizenship after his British visa has not been renewed. An Israeli Immigration and Absorption Ministry official says the Chelsea soccer club owner arrived in Israel Monday and was granted citizenship in accordance with an Israeli law granting that right to people of Jewish descent

    US Bank Puts £2bn Price Tag on Roman Abramovich's Chelsea FC - Reports

    © AP Photo / Matt Dunham
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    The news came following the Russian-born billionaire's decision to put Chelsea's stadium expansion plans on hold, which had fueled speculation over his long-standing commitment to the club. Abramovich has recently decided to obtain Israeli citizenship amid difficulties renewing his UK visa.

    The 51-year-old billionaire, Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has hired Raine Group, a New York-based investment bank, to conduct a strategic review overseen by his senior advisers to assess the value of his football club, The Sunday Times reports.

    The bank is said to have estimated the club at being worth £2 billion, according to The Daily Mail. Chelsea officials have declined to comment but an unnamed source close to the club denied plans to sell it.

    READ MORE: Abramovich Puts Chelsea Stadium Project on Ice, Might Withdraw UK Visa Request

    In June, news broke that Abramovich had pushed back Jim Ratcliffe, a British chemicals tycoon and the country's wealthiest man, who has reportedly voiced an interest in buying the West London club.

    Roman Abramovich, a Russia-born businessman and investor who bought Chelsea in 2003, was granted Israeli citizenship in late May. Earlier on, he had shelved Stamford Bridge redevelopment plans worth £500 million (over 550m euros) after he had failed to renew his UK working visa.

    Abramovich's visa issues came amid Britain's crackdown on Russian money in the UK after the Salisbury poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter by a nerve agent. Senior British officials have accused Russia of involvement in the attack, which the Kremlin has repeatedly denied. On March 15, then-Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson threatened the UK would "go after the money," when asked about possible sanctions on the UK assets of Russian businessmen.

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    Abramovich Puts Chelsea Stadium Project on Ice, Might Withdraw UK Visa Request
    New Israeli Citizen Abramovich Needs UK Work Permit to Manage His Chelsea FC
    Russian Billionaire Abramovich Left Israel After Obtaining Citizenship – Source
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    investment, football, Chelsea FC, Roman Abramovich, United Kingdom
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