Under-fire Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has been backed by controversial political figure Nigel Farage amidst the uncertainty surrounding his now-precarious Stamford Bridge future.
Abramovich announced his intentions to sell the club last week in a statement, saying it was ‘in the best interests of the public’ to do so.
The Russian oligarch has come under intense criticism in recent weeks after his position became untenable due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, with reports claiming he had close ties with President Vladimir Putin.
He told the club’s official website that he wished to sell the European champions after a 19-year stint, with no intention for the new potential owner to repay the £1.5billion loan he had lent the club in that time.
But he was sanctioned on Thursday morning, with his assets frozen – meaning that he can’t sell the club, nor can Chelsea sign players, renew contracts or even sell match day tickets.
“And yet, is it right to effectively seize people’s assets without any form of due process? Would it really turn Russians against Vladimir Putin? I’m concerned about the way in which this is being done, and of course it includes Chelsea Football Club.
“Abramovich has owned Chelsea since 2003 and they’ve won about 20 major titles in that time. He’d already said – and my guess was he said it to try and avoid being sanctioned – that the club was up for sale.
“He’d already said that his £1.5billion loan didn’t want to be returned and that any profits from the sale would go into a fund to help victims of the war in Ukraine.
“But nevertheless they’ve gone ahead, plunging Chelsea into chaos.”
Chelsea’s stars put the criticism behind them in their 3-1 win at Norwich on Thursday evening.
The Blues ran out 3-1 winners thanks to goals from Trevoh Chalobah, Mason Mount and Kai Havertz at Carrow Road.
The win puts them 13 points behind Manchester City with a game in hand, with their ever-fading title hopes still just about intact.