Frozen food magnate linked to Villa sale. Anything to it?

Ben Hoskins

The internet is abuzz over rumours of a new owner for Aston Villa. Should we take them seriously?

Remember when silly season was just transfer-based? We'd get the odd ITK tweet about Hiroshi Kiyotake being on a plane to Birmingham, everyone would get all verklempt, it wouldn't happen, and we'd move on. In the grand scale, it was pretty meaningless, too. One player does not make or break a team. But when your team is for sale every rumour has massive import. A new owner could change the face of the club entirely, and every little whisper seems to gain in importance because of that. 

Today's select scuttlebutt is that a consortium headed by American frozen food mogul Robert Rich (or Bob Rich, depending on where you're looking) is looking to buy Villa. Insofar as I can tell, the rumour began with this tweet:

And so far as I can tell, that's all there is to this. In standard Internet fashion, the ITK tweet has picked up steam and rolled ahead. To the best of my knowledge, there is no reason to think that the account is a good source. I've yet to see them hit on anything that wasn't obvious.

But, just so we have some background, it's worth noting that Rich is the chairman of Rich Products Corporation, a large frozen foods company in the United States. He is valued at £1.78 billion, and this wouldn't be his first foray into football, just his first serious one. After his wife bought him a lordship in Bedlington, he sunk some cash into the Bedlington Terriers, currently on the ninth level of the English football pyramid. He's gotten them a shirt sponsor as well as a new scoreboard. He's also been to a few matches, seeming to take a real interest in the club. Outside of football, Rich also owns the Jamestown Jammers Short-A baseball team and the Buffalo Bison AAA team. 

That said, there seems to be absolutely nothing to these rumours. That's not to say that something won't happen, but as of now we've got no reason to believe it will. Carry on with your day. 

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