Roman Abramovich, Russian billionaire and owner of Chelsea, said in a statement released on Saturday, “I am today giving trustees of Chelsea’s charitable Foundation the stewardship and care of Chelsea FC.”
The decision to hand over “stewardship and care of the club” to the club’s charitable foundation comes as a result of the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine. The move comes after UK parliament heard on Thursday that Abramovich should hand over the club following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Abramovich, 55, has been the owner of Chelsea since 2003.
UPDATE: According to a report from the Telegraph, the trustees of Chelsea’s charitable foundation not yet agreed to Abramovich’s idea to hand them stewardship of the club, and that they only learned of the plan on Saturday when he made the announcement. NBC Sports’ broadcast crew discussed the latest twist in this story on Sunday.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, via the club’s official statement:
During my nearly 20-year ownership of Chelsea FC, I have always viewed my role as a custodian of the Club, whose job it is ensuring that we are as successful as we can be today, as well as build for the future, while also playing a positive role in our communities. I have always taken decisions with the Club’s best interest at heart. I remain committed to these values. That is why I am today giving trustees of Chelsea’s charitable Foundation the stewardship and care of Chelsea FC.
I believe that currently they are in the best position to look after the interests of the Club, players, staff, and fans.
The Associated Press reported on Saturday that Abramovich does not intend to sell Chelsea. Abramovich reportedly intends to protect the club’s reputation by removing himself from its day-to-day operations.
Abramovich isn't selling Chelsea and he's just handing over day-to-day control of the club while the club is under scrutiny he has faced calls to sell up amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine. https://t.co/558jWCVTcu
— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) February 26, 2022
As more information becomes available regarding Roman Abramovich’s decision to hand over “stewardship and care” of Chelsea amid the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, PST will update this post with the latest news. The NBC Sports broadcast team will also have coverage immediately following the conclusion of Everton vs Manchester City on Peacock Premium.