When James Pallotta completes the sale of AS Roma to The Friedkin Group, he’ll reportedly try to purchase an English club, having grown frustrated with Italian red tape.
A statement released late last night confirmed they were “in negotiations” for the sale, but insisted reports of an imminent transfer of money was premature.
Any deal would be subject to due diligence and is said to be in the region of €790m.
Now La Repubblica newspaper claims Pallotta has no intention of leaving the world of football, but rather turning his attention to England.
He has asked consultant Franco Baldini, who is based in London, to find a new project for him to invest in, even if it means starting from the Championship.
Pallotta never made any secret of his frustration with Italian authorities and the constant delays over the Stadio della Roma became untenable.
He had stated at Francesco Totti’s farewell match in May 2017 that he’d walk away unless Roma had their stadium in 2020, but as we go into the new decade, planning permission has not even been granted, nor are there any guarantees it will be.
The stadium was always a key point of Pallotta’s project for the club and he argued it was impossible to avoid selling star names unless they had that extra revenue.
Roma wanted to build on land that had no existing stadium and would require large-scale infrastructure changes from the local authorities to create transport links.
The Serie A club was taken over by a group of American businessmen in the summer of 2011, headed by Thomas DiBenedetto, but Pallotta increased his investment to become President and majority shareholder a year later.