The news follows developments at Chelsea, where his good friend Roman Abramovich previously announced that he wanted to sell the club. A process that is now at a standstill because the heavy sanctions imposed on Abramovich by the British government have also hit Chelsea hard.
Football chief Valentijn Driessen reacts to the situation. The article continues below the video.
Two weeks ago, immediately after the Russian invasion, Vitesse issued a reassuring statement. “The club is in financially stable conditions and at the moment we do not foresee any significant consequences for Vitesse.” But those reassuring words are quickly overtaken by current events.
Oyf’s decision has major consequences for Vitesse, which had a business model in which the owner made up the shortfall of millions annually. It seems unlikely that a new owner can be found who is willing to step in under comparable conditions. That will mean a drastic adjustment of the level of expenditure and ambition.
Oyf runs Vitesse through a letterbox company in Oosterbeek in Gelderland called Performance Management Holding BV. This BV has negative equity of 132 million euros. This concerns a debt owed to himself by Oyf, a way to keep his football expenses out of his normal business activities and to park them in a separate BV. The Russian will at most see a part of the money spent in a sale. Connoisseurs estimated the value of Vitesse at a maximum of 20 to 25 million euros.
The Gelredome, the home port of Vitesse.
With the intended sale by Oyf, the Russian era of Vitesse, which started in 2010, will come to an end. Under the leadership of Merab Jordania, Alexander Chigirinsky and Oyf, all relations of Chelsea owner Abramovich, more than 150 million euros was put into Vitesse from the Russian connection. The biggest successes were the cup win in 2017, the first and only prize in the 130-year club history, and the current European season, in which Vitesse managed to reach the eighth finals of the Conference League.
Valeriy Oyf says in a response: “It pains me a lot to say goodbye to Vitesse, but in the current situation I am making this difficult decision in the interest of the club, employees, supporters, sponsors and other stakeholders. I look back on a special period, in which I always felt very involved with the club and enjoyed the great performances. Vitesse is in my heart and that will always apply to the club and the supporters.”
In the statement that the club has issued in collaboration with Oyf, it is stated that “when the shares are sold, a careful procedure is followed, so that the continuity of the club is guaranteed and Vitesse can continue to focus on its sporting ambitions.”
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