Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Chelsea fined £8.6m for FFP breach as Juventus banned from Europe for 2023/24 in separate financial case

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Chelsea have agreed a settlement with UEFA and will hand over €10m (£8.6m) for “submitting incomplete financial information” during the Roman Abramovich era.

A new ownership group led by Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital completed their takeover of the club in May last year from Abramovich, who was sanctioned over his links to Russia president Vladimir Putin.

UEFA, which has also banned Juventus from competing in the Europa Conference League this season due to financial irregularities, confirmed it was approached “proactively” by the Boehly-led consortium.

They detected instances of partial financial information being submitted in historical transactions occurring between 2012 and 2019, breaching UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play regulations.

A UEFA statement said: “Following its assessment, including the applicable statute of limitations, the CFCB (Club Financial Control Body) First Chamber entered into a settlement agreement with the club which has agreed to pay a
financial contribution of €10m to fully resolve the reported matters.”

A Chelsea statement read: “Chelsea FC’s ownership group completed its purchase of the club on 30 May 2022. During a thorough due diligence process prior to completion of the purchase, the ownership group became aware of potentially incomplete financial reporting concerning historical transactions during the club’s previous ownership.

“Immediately following the completion of the purchase, Chelsea self-reported these matters to UEFA.

“Chelsea has fully cooperated and assisted UEFA with its investigation of these matters and, following an analysis by the UEFA Club Financial Control Body, the club has entered into a settlement agreement with UEFA. Under that settlement the club is to pay a financial contribution of €10m to UEFA as a fixed payment.

“In accordance with the club’s ownership group’s core principles of full compliance and transparency with its regulators, we are grateful that this case has been concluded by proactive disclosure of information to UEFA and a settlement that fully resolves the reported matters.

“We wish to place on record our gratitude to UEFA for its consideration of this matter. Chelsea greatly values its relationship with UEFA and looks forward to building on that relationship in the years to come.”

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Chelsea head coach Mauricio Pochettino says he will need to add players this summer but wants players who are fully committed to his project at the club, even if they are not starting.

The sanction represents another blow for Chelsea’s current owners after a disappointing first year at the helm, with the club’s 12th-place finish in the Premier League last term their worst since 1993/94.

Chelsea have forked out around £600m in transfers since Boehly’s arrival, while former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has been tasked with turning around their on-pitch fortunes.

Juventus have also been reprimanded after a separate UEFA investigation and as well as throwing the Italian giants out of European football, they have been fined €20m (£17.14m).

However, half of that fine has been suspended and Juventus will only have to pay if their financial records for the next three years do not comply with the accounting requirements.

UEFA had already taken the club out of Champions League qualification. Juventus now loses its spot in the third-tier Europa Conference League, which will go to Fiorentina in the play-offs round starting on August 24.

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Highlights of the Premier League Summer Series match between Newcastle United and Chelsea.

Juventus – who were docked 10 points last season over their past transfer dealings, effectively ending their hopes of Champions League qualification – were found to have violated the framework of a settlement agreement with UEFA in August last year.

Juventus president Gianluca Ferrero said in a statement on the club’s website: “We regret the decision of the UEFA Club Financial Control Body.

“We do not share the interpretation that has been given of our defence and we remain firmly convinced of the legitimacy of our actions and the validity of our arguments.

“However, we have decided not to appeal this judgement. Despite this painful decision, we can now face the new season by focusing on the field and not on the courts.”

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