Chelsea celebrating Todd BoehlyGetty/GOAL

Chelsea takeover shortlist: Boehly & Broughton among successful 'preferred bidders'

Chelsea have informed the successful potential future owners of the club that they have progressed to the next round of the takeover process, rejecting a whole host of other bidders.

The sale of the Blues, handled by Raine Group, looks to be heading into the final stages with at least a quartet of options still in the mix, including the consortium headed up by Los Angeles Dodgers owner Todd Boehly with features Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss and British entrepreneur Jonathan Goldstein.

Atalanta part-owner Stephen Pagliuca is also through to the shortlist stage, along with the bid from Harris Blizter Sports & Entertainment, part owners of Crystal Palace, with backing from ex-Liverpool chairman Sir Martin Broughton and World Athletics president Lord Sebastian Coe, alongside the offer from unpopular Chicago Cubs owners the Ricketts family.

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Who has missed out?

Nick Candy's offer, which had the £1 billion ($1.3bn) backing of a South Korean group, and Gianluca Vialli's Tifosy Capital and Advisory, is now out of the running.

Meanwhile, the status of Centricus, the London-based global investment firm who had bid close to £3 billion ($4bn), is not yet confirmed.

As first revealed by GOAL, the Saudi Media Group are out of contention despite having had a 'competitive bid'.

New York Jets owner Woody Johnson is also said to be out of the running, while there were thought to be other bids that didn't go public about their intention to buy Chelsea FC.

Despite failing in the process, some of the interested parties are thought to be ready to join the negotiations through the preferred bidders.

Saudi Media Group and Catalina Kim of C&P Sports Group, who leads the Korean influence around Candy, are both ready to offer their further backing to the successful consortiums.

What happens now?

The successful bids will be looked over in far greater detail and include background checks on everyone involved in the process and where their money comes from.

The idea is to have a clear view and do 'due diligence' on the potential future owners of Chelsea FC.

Although there's a desire to complete the process at rapid speed, it could still take some time to choose a potential owner.

Chelsea's board, which features Marina Granovskaia, Bruce Buck, Eugene Tenenbaum and David Barnard, will ultimately decide who owns the club in the future.

Raine Group are not said to be making the choice and are simply advising. Meanwhile, the UK Government are involved but only to ensure that no money goes to sanctioned owner Roman Abramovich, with the proceeds of the sale to go into a frozen account or to charity.

The Blues had hoped to have a new owner before their next match against Brentford after the international break but that's highly unlikely now.

The process needs to be completed before May 31 or it could cause a significant negative impact on the finances of the west Londoners.

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