EPL: Premier League describes Abramovich’s era at Chelsea as “difficult”


Premier League chief executive, Richard Masters has claimed it would be “difficult” to say the Roman Abramovich era at Chelsea was good for the brand of England’s top division.

Abramovich was forced to sell the club to a group led by LA Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly.

Following the Russian’s arrival as Chelsea owner in 2003, the Blues went on to win five Premier League titles and two Champions League titles.

Chelsea were also able to sign some of the world’s top players due to the financial transformation overseen by the billionaire.

But following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, the UK government sanctioned Abramovich and froze his assets, including Chelsea, due to his connections to Russian president Vladimir Putin.

“It’s difficult to say now, with hindsight, that it’s all been good, given what has transpired over the last six-and-a-half months,” Masters said in a media briefing at the Premier League London headquarters.

“I think if you ask Chelsea fans, they would give you a different answer.

“I think the situation we ended with has given the sport some challenges we’ve got to meet. Ultimately, there wasn’t an owners’ and directors’ test when Abramovich took ownership of Chelsea, so I suppose the answer to the question is, had there been that in place what would have happened and what safeguards we need to build in for the future?

“[There is] a rolling test, yes. Prevention is better than cure, isn’t it? There wasn’t then, there is now, it’s going to change and part of that actually is probably going to be the strengthening of the annual test.”

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