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Roman Abramovich defends revolving door manager policy at Chelsea

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Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has backed his cut-throat style of ownership, insisting he is not afraid to make controversial decision in search of success for the team.

Abramovich’s willingness to sack managers – current boss Thomas Tuchel is the 15th boss in the owner’s 18 years at Stamford – has seen him come under fire, but their had been hopes that things were about to change when club legend Frank Lampard was appointed in the summer of 2019.

Frank Lampard
Abramovich was forced to defend Lampard’s sacking | Pool/Getty Images

Lampard was given his marching orders in January, with the team slowly drifting further and further away from a spot in next season’s Champions League, and while he knows it might not always make him popular, Abramovich insisted difficult decisions have to be made for the good of the club.

“I think we are pragmatic in our choices,” Abramovich told Forbes. “And we are comfortable making the right changes at the right time to ensure we can achieve our long-term ambitions.

“I hope it also says something about the clarity of the long-term ambition of the club. Those who join understand the objectives both on the pitch, as well as the wider positive role the club plays in the community.'”

On top of defending his revolving door policy, Abramovich has also faced questions about his commitment to Chelsea over the past 12 months.

Roman Abramovich
Abramovich used to be a regular visitor at Stamford Bridge | BEN STANSALL/Getty Images

The Russian is currently not allowed to live in England after being denied a visa and has therefore not attended a Premier League game in the last two years, prompting rumours that he may have grown tired of life as an owner.

While Abramovich confessed that he may have opted against buying a football club if he was given a do-over of 2003, he was adamant that he could not be more committed to the cause if he tried.

“The ambitions are as true now as they were when I first became owner and I hope that can be seen through the work we have been doing on and off the pitch over the last 17 years,” Abramovich continued.

“Chelsea has a very rich history, and I feel extremely fortunate to a play a part in that. The club was here before me, and will be here after me, but my job is to ensure we are as successful as we can be today, as well as build for the future. That’s why the success of our academy at Cobham is so important to me.

“Chelsea is not just the men’s first team. Chelsea is a community. It’s the women’s team, it’s the youth teams, it’s the academy, it’s support to former players of the club. It’s something that we started to do since day one.

“The reason is that we approached Chelsea as a community. And people within the community—there are children, there are women, there are men, there are former players, there are current players, there are future players—all of them need to be welcomed and part of how we conduct the business.”

For more from ​Tom Gott, follow him on ​Twitter!



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