From Russia with love: cash flowing into London

FROM the King’s Road to Royal Berkshire – football’s Russian revolution looks set to claim another victory this spring when Anton Zingarevich pours his cash into Reading.

The Championship side is small in comparison to Roman Abramovich’s Chelsea but it is, at least, very near to London, which remains an affluent market and the spiritual home to Russian oligarchs.

This may be part of the reason Zingarevich pulled back from investing in Everton in 2004, despite the Merseyside club’s rich history of nine league titles and the fairytale goals of Dixie Dean 90 years ago.

Today the Toffees live in the shadow of Liverpool, having cashed in on several of their best players, and live in hope of a new stadium and a new owner. Reading, by contrast, have benefited from a ground built only 14 years ago, a period of investment, albeit modest by football standards, and a densely packed local population who could be tempted through the door. It’s no wonder the Royals have charmed the Russian.