Ken Bates Factfile

Last updated : 21 January 2005 By Kevin Markey
1931: Born December 4 in Ealing, West London. Made his personal fortune from a ready-mix concrete business and dairy farming and was briefly chairman of Oldham in the 1960s, as well as buying control of Wigan in 1981.

1982: Bought Chelsea Football Club for £1, albeit taking on significant debts in the process.

1985: The Football Association and the Greater London Council rejected his proposals for electrified fencing to deter hooligans.

1986: Joined Football League management committee and submitted planning application to rebuild Stamford Bridge as a new stadium, rather than an opposing bid by Marler Estates to build flats.

1991: Chelsea fined £105k for alleged illegal payments to players. Bates resigned from the Football League management committee.

1992: Formed Chelsea Village Limited after winning his battle for control of Stamford Bridge. Under Bates, the transformation of the ground began and a hotel was built backing on to the stadium.

1993: Appointed Glenn Hoddle as manager, the decision which initially sparked Chelsea's recovery and they reached the FA Cup final in 1994 only to lose to Manchester United.

1994: Matthew Harding was appointed to the board after Bates called for new investors.

1996: Harding, having been elevated to chairman of Chelsea Village plc, was killed in a helicopter crash.

1997: Bates joined the board of Wembley National Stadium Limited. His vision for Wembley was later scaled down by the Football Association. Chelsea won the FA Cup under Ruud Gullit.

1998: Bates sacked Gullit. Chelsea won the European Cup Winners' Cup and Coca-Cola Cup under new boss Gianluca Vialli.

2000: Chelsea reach the Champions League quarter-finals only to lose to Barcelona. Vialli was sacked four months after leading Chelsea to FA Cup success. Claudio Ranieri was appointed in his place.

2001: Bates resigned from the board of WNSL.

2003: In July, Bates sold his controlling stake in Chelsea to Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich for £17m. Bates remained as club chairman.

2004, March 2: Bates announced his decision to step down as Chelsea Football Club chairman, having already been replaced as chairman of the Chelsea Village parent company.

March 25: Announced his willingness to invest upwards of £10m in Sheffield Wednesday if given access to the club's financial records.

2005, January 21: Confirms he is to take over at Leeds United.