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American Dream



The news is difficult to rely on now. So many sources are reactionary, even more just try to be the first to report something, whether or not it is correct. But some stories gain so much weight that in the long run, they are believed long past when they are disproved. While some subscribe to the “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” theory that if it’s reported enough, there must be some truth to the story, I find that it is less and less true. And yet the reports of David Han Li being in New York do seem to be true, even if it remains to be seen if he is actually pursuing the American dream.

Suddenly every American billionaire wants Milan?

The news cycle seems to be giving the wealthiest potential American investors about 24-48 hours of fame. Due to UEFA’s impending sentencing for Financial Fair Play (FFP) violations, and reporters being too lazy to actually find out what the real situation is with Yonghong Li, let alone print the picture of the correct person, the news has switched its focus, like the Eye of Sauron, to America. Each day, a new potential American savior arrives in the news feed, and when those rumors get old, there is a new one. Luckily, there are plenty of wealthy American businessmen to write about, and it’s much easier to find stuff out about them than it is to find out about Yonghong Li.

First on the docket was the Ricketts family. Tom Ricketts reportedly sent an email confirming his family’s interest in AC Milan. Despite the fact that the email was meant to be private and actually contains incorrect English, it didn’t stop the press from running with the story. The owner of the Chicago Cubs, he helped the Chicago Cubs out of decades without winning a Major League Baseball title to win the World Series in 2016. He is also the director of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation, as well as Chairman and CEO of Incapital, LLC., an investment bank in Chicago. The Ricketts’ family is reportedly worth a billion dollars.

Can the Ricketts family replicate the success they've had in Chicago?

However, the news cycle is fickle, and less than 36 hours into that news, reports emerged that Rocco Commisso, friend of Sal Galiatoto and the chairman of the New York Cosmos was in pole position in negotiations for a stake in the club. He is also the CEO and founder of Mediacom, and reportedly worth $4.5 billion. His story is a rags to riches one, having immigrated from Calabria when he was just twelve years old. However, he is also a self-proclaimed lifelong Juventus fan. And as soon as fans got wind of that, the news reported he wanted full ownership of Milan, and that is not okay with Yonghong Li or Elliott Management.

Why would a Juventus fan want to buy Milan?

So Il Sole 24 Ore, usually fairly reliable in these matters, also listed three other potential American investors who are interested in a stake of Milan. Whether this was a game of Friday afternoon drinking and throwing darts at the names of rich American sports investors or it’s legit, these are the names they came up with:

Tilman Fertitta, who owns Landry’s restaurants and also the Houston Rockets basketball team. Another Italian immigrant from Sicily, his net worth is listed as $4.4 billion. But his real claim to fame comes from television, where he is the star of the show “Billion Dollar Buyer.”

Joshua Harris is the co-founder of Apollo Global Management, an investment firm, and his net worth is listed as $3.5 billion. He is also the owner of the New Jersey Devils hockey team, the Philadelphia 76ers basketball team, and also owns a stake in Crystal Palace.

James L. Dolan has a net worth of $1.5 billion. He is also the executive chairman for the Madison Square Garden Company, as well as MSG Networks. This also makes him CEO and Executive Chairman of the New York Knicks basketball team, the New York Rangers hockey team, and the New York Liberty women’s basketball team. He personally oversees the day to day operations of all of Madison Square Garden Company’s operations, including the aforementioned teams.

Wealthy Italian immigrant who owns a sports team? Add Fertitta to the list

So who is next in the news cycle? Or is one of these men actually going to be Milan’s savior? Is Yonghong Li even willing to part with a majority share of Milan? He has actually invested quite a lot of his own money, and not been able to see the fruition of his investments exactly just yet. But if the press has their way, Milan will be living the American dream sooner rather than later.


This post inspired by the music of Lenny Kravitz’s “American Woman”