CHELSEA, Wednesday (15/3), have canceled their request for the FA Cup quarter-final match against Middlesbrough to be played without spectators.
Previously, the English Premier League club requested that Sunday’s match on Sunday (20/3) WIB at Riverside be played without spectators after the British government banned Chelsea from selling their match tickets.
The Blues asked the British government to relax the sanctions imposed on them after the club’s owner from London, Roman Abramovich, last week was given sanctions related to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
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The punishment was meant to prevent Chelsea, who is an arm of Abramovich – who is considered close to Russian President Vladimir Putin – from earning money.
Chelsea, Tuesday (15/3), issued a statement requesting that the FA Cup match against Middlesbrough be played behind closed doors for reasons of fairness.
Middlesbrough responded strongly to Chelsea’s request while underscoring the reasons for Chelsea’s punishment.
“We are aware of Chelsea’s request for the FA Cup sixth round match to be played behind closed doors. We view the request as strange and without reason,” said Middlesbrough in an official statement.
“Seeing the reason the sanction was imposed, for Chelsea to make an excuse ‘fairness’ for the game to be played without spectators is a very ironic thing,” continued the Championship Division club.
The Chelsea Supporters’ trust has asked the Blues to withdraw the request while the British government insists it sees no reason to hold the game behind closed doors.
“After negotiations between the FA and Chelsea, Chelsea have agreed to withdraw their request for the FA Cup quarter-final match against Middlesbrough to be played behind closed doors,” an FA spokesperson said.
“The FA are in discussions with Chelsea, the Premier League and the government to find a solution that will allow Chelsea supporters to attend matches and visiting supporters to come to Stamford Bridge without violating any sanctions imposed by the government.” (AFP/OL-1)