Chelsea’s decision to take part in the Super League — before they eventually pulled out — did not come solely from club owner Roman Abramovich, but rather a collective decision as a board, according to The Athletic.
This is the one question that almost every Chelsea fan is thinking about. Who is responsible for the club’s involvement in the European Super League plans?
Based on the club’s official statement, we know that Chelsea joined late and had only agreed to join last week before they withdrew just 48 hours after the announcement.
A report from The Telegraph supported this argument, claiming Chelsea, along with Manchester City, “felt they had been left with little choice to do so if they were not to be left behind by the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Barcelona”.
Chelsea’s not being one of the instigators does not really make up for the disastrous decision, however. They still agreed to take part.
And now a report from The Athletic suggests that the club’s ESL decision was not Abramovich’s, at least not his alone.
According to the report, the decision to join the Super League “was taken as a board”, and the same group also “instigated the U-turn”.
A source claims that they will “will continue to work on behalf of the owner”, the report added.
One name is mentioned as “the hart of it all”: Bruce Buck — which is not a surprise considering as the chairman, he is second only to Abramovich in the club’s organisational structure.
The report further added that the club “panicked by others’ sense of urgency” and with “insufficient due diligence informing their judgement”, the club agreed to become one of the 12 founding clubs.
At least for now, Abramovich is reportedly not planning to sack the Buck or anyone else among the club executives.
But regardless of the pressure and the fear of being left behind, as The Telegraph’s report mentioned, the lack of discussion with the supporters for such a big decision would be deemed unforgivable by some.
Because of the board’s ill-judged decision, the club is now facing potential punishments from the Premier League and the UEFA that will affect the players, the staff, and the supporters who had nothing to do with it.