Rocco Commisso, in talks to buy Milan, calls himself “the fulfilment of the American dream in all ways” and went from penniless immigrant Juventus fan to a $4.5bn fortune.
Multiple sources now state that Commisso is the US investor working with Goldman Sachs to purchase the majority shares in the club from Yonghong Li.
He has already done due diligence and is therefore a long way ahead of the other main contender, Tom Ricketts.
Commisso is already in the sport, as in 2017 he saved New York Cosmos from bankruptcy.
He is a member of the Forbes 400 for 2017 and made his fortune in cable, now transforming the same Mediacom company into a popular broadband provider.
“In the history of Italian immigration, in the business world, I don’t think there’s another one like me in the last 100 years,” he told Forbes Magazine.
He arrived in America unable to speak a word of English aged 12, having grown up in the Calabria region – the same area that current Milan Coach Gennaro Gattuso and director of sport Massimiliano Mirabelli are from – the son of a carpenter.
“I’m the fulfilment of the American dream in all ways,” added Commisso, who confessed in 2017 that he was thinking about setting down some Serie A roots.
After all, Roma, Venezia and Reggiana are all owned by Americans, while Bologna belong to Canadian Joey Saputo.
“I have been approached numerous times to buy an Italian team. Recently, the guy involved in selling AC Milan to the Chinese is a friend of mine, Sal Galatioto. We worked together many years ago at Royal Bank of Canada,” Commisso told We The Italians.
“In the initial stages, he asked me if I wanted to get involved, as he knows I have the financial resources and the interest in Italian soccer.
“About 17 years ago, I was asked to buy Sampdoria, the Serie A team from Genoa. After that, I was invited to be invest with De Benedetto and Pallotta to buy Roma.
“There have been calls to me from Pescara, Palermo, Catania, Reggina. Do you know why I turned them down? Because I am a loyal fan of Juventus since my youth playing soccer in the sandy beaches of Calabria.
“I have met the Agnelli, the Juventus owners, but frankly, they don’t need my money. My proposal to Juventus was not to buy the team. I wanted to do something similar to when Gadhafi from Libya bought a piece of Juventus 20-30 years ago.
“I truly would love, before I go bye-bye for good, to be able to say that I am the largest minority owner of Juventus: not to run it, because I think the Agnelli are phenomenal people and they’ve done a great job in leading Juventus to one of the top clubs in the world.”
Perhaps he has finally decided to buy up their Serie A rivals instead. After all, Silvio Berlusconi originally supported Inter before his 31-year tenure at San Siro.
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