West Ham United may or may not be up for sale but the David Sullivan and David Gold are under pressure to depart.
A large section of Hammers fans are angry with the duo. They want them to sell up to wealthier, more ambitious owners who can reward their fierce loyalty.
Things have gone quiet on that front since.
But West Ham fans won’t be going quiet anytime soon.
West Ham fan protests not going away
More protests are planned for the Liverpool away game and the Southampton home match.
There is a feeling among some supporters that there simply may not be the interest in the Hammers.
Especially if Sullivan and Gold want big money and given the club does not even own its stadium.
New owners would come in knowing they would at some stage have to invest in the stadium, a major overhaul of the training facilities and consistent investment in the squad.
But there are also many major positive factors too.
Pros and cons for prospective new owners
A big and loyal fanbase. West Ham have had the second most season ticket holders in the Premier League, with more than 54,000 for four consecutive seasons.
West Ham have not won a major trophy for 40 years but the Hammers faithful keep turning up regardless.
There aren’t many clubs that can boast that kind of fiercely loyal following.
And imagine being the owner that finally gets it right and brings the club a bit of success?
The stadium issues are serious. But the stadium could likely be purchased for a reasonable price. And this is 2020 so the London Stadium CAN be fixed – just ask Real Sociedad fans.
So we had a look at five billionaires who have previously been linked with an interest in buying Premier League clubs over the last decade but are yet to do so.
Whether one or any of them could be tempted into taking over West Ham is anyone’s guess.
The purpose of the exercise, though, is to highlight there are people out there with the kind of finances needed – verified by Bloomberg – to take the East Londoners to the fabled next level.
5 billionaire sports nuts who could take Hammers to next level
Well known Hammers fan and Claret & Hugh blogger Sean Whetstone took to Twitter recently to tantalisingly float the prospect of US billionaire Todd Boehly taking over West Ham.
Boehly is worth around £4.7bn, owns 20% of the LA Dodgers, is CEO is of Eldridge Industries – a private investment firm – and former president of Guggenheim Partners.
He has previously been linked with a takeover at Chelsea (The Sun).
Lakashmi Mittal is Mr Metal. One of the world’s largest steelmakers, his net worth is said to be around $12.3billion.
The Indian citizen lives in London and currently co-owns Queens Park Rangers. QPR’s struggles have been well documented so Mittal may be tempted to take a big step up by swapping West for East London. Hammers and steel seem a good combination. And if the London Stadium is to be revamped or a new stadium constructed they could use Mittal’s metal to do it.
He has previously shown interest in Wigan Athletic and Everton (Telegraph).
Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal
Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed certainly knows how to spend money and is said to be worth $17billion. As the descendant of the founding King of Saudi Arabia, the Prince has the kind of profile that might force West Ham chief Sullivan to be true to his word.
Back in 2016 Sullivan told West Ham’s official website he would only sell the club to mega rich Saudi royalty.
Prince Alwaleed is a big sports fan and likes to splash the cash. He once purchased Donald Trump’s boat and at one stage was said to have 300 cars and a lagoon swimming pool. Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal also gifted 25 Bentley cars to the players and staff of Saudi football club Nasr after they won the league one season (Arabian Business).
Once linked with a takeover of Aston Villa (The Register), Lawrence Ellison is the man behind business software giant Oracle.
He has a net worth of just under $70billion and is a real fairytale rags to riches story. Ellison is reportedly desperate to get into sports, but has found it tricky. He was once knocked back in his attempt to buy the San Francisco 49ers.
Asia’s richest resident Mukesh Ambani has a net worth of more than $56billion. The Indian billionaire business magnate owns the Mumbai Indians cricket team. And as a result he is one of the world’s richest sports team owners.
Ambani once built himself a 27 story house and is no stranger to splashing the cash. He was also once linked with a takeover of Liverpool (Times of India).
He is a keen sports fan. So West Ham fans should start pestering him to give Sullivan and Gold a call.