Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has been sanctioned by the UK government – meaning he is now unable to sell the club.
Abramovich has had “his assets frozen, a prohibition on transactions with UK individuals and businesses, a travel ban and transport sanctions” imposed on him. There is now doubt as to whether he will be able to sell the club due to the restrictions he is under.
The government have granted Chelsea a special license to allow fixtures to be fulfilled, staff to be paid and existing ticket holders to attend matches. It is unclear if the license covers just Chelsea’s first team or all teams, including the women’s and junior sides.
Nadine Dorries, the minister for Sport and Culture, has tweeted: “I know this brings some uncertainty, but the Government will work with the league & clubs to keep football being played while ensuring sanctions hit those intended. Football clubs are cultural assets and the bedrock of our communities. We’re committed to protecting them.”
A government statement said: “Given the significant impact that today’s sanctions would have on Chelsea football club and the potential knock on effects of this, the Government has this morning published a licence which authorises a number of football-related activities to continue at Chelsea.
“This includes permissions for the club to continue playing matches and other football related activity which will in turn protect the Premier League, the wider football pyramid, loyal fans and other clubs. This licence will only allow certain explicitly named actions to ensure the designated individual is not able to circumvent UK sanctions. The licence will be kept under constant review and we will work closely with the football authorities.”