Another name has emerged as a possible new owner for AC Milan, as it now appears that Elliott Management will take control of the club. Miami-based businessman Riccardo Silva has apparently also become interested in purchasing at least a share of Milan.
Silva is a Milan season ticket holder and a fan of the club.
Silva already owns an American football club, Miami FC, but with that club’s league, NASL, on “hiatus” after crumbling, it appears that Silva might be trying to purchase a share in a much larger enterprise.
Silva will be best known to American fans for famously offering MLS a $4 billion for media rights, should MLS a promotion/relegation system last summer. And while the deal sounded too good to be true, it probably was. MLS is in the middle of a contract with ESPN and Fox and could not start negotiations on any new TV/ media rights contract, making the whole thing seem more like a publicity stunt rather than a serious offer.
Additionally, Silva has an interest in seeing MLS adopt promotion/relegation as his team, Miami FC, are not in the top division and MLS has already awarded an expansion franchise to the Miami area, not allowing Miami FC to be considered for a move to MLS anytime soon. The NASL, and Silva, are engaged in a legal dispute with MLS about a lack of an “open” system, but it doesn’t look like their efforts will get very far.
Besides being an active owner in the NASL, Silva was the co-founder of MP & Silva, a media-rights company that has been active all over the world. His fellow co-founder, Andrea Radrizzani, is currently the owner of Leeds United in the English Championship.
Radrizzani has overseen an interesting time at Leeds, earning goodwill by buying back the stadium, Elland Road, from a landlord and appointing legendary Argentine manager, Marcelo Bielsa. The former Athletic Bilbao and Chile manager is the biggest name in management in the English second division right now. Leeds have also had investment from the San Francisco 49ers of the NFL.
However, Radrizzani has also released a comically terrible new badge at Leeds that was taken back after about six hours, and also garnered controversy by taking the club on a post-season tour of international pariah Myanmar.
Will Silva be a good owner of Milan? He’s got money, unlike Yonghong Li, and he wants his team to win and looks like he’s willing to spend for it to be good, which is all that most fans ask for in an owner. He’s also a fan of Milan, which might bode well if he employs the right people at the club.