Antonio Conte has claimed that Chelsea’s situation is a ‘pity’ after owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the UK government in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 

It was announced on Thursday that Abramovich had been included on a list of sanctioned Russian oligarchs, who have had assets frozen, including Chelsea Football Club (BBC News). 

The punishment means Chelsea, who are now operating under a ‘general licence’, are unable to buy or sell players, renew contracts for existing squad members or sell match tickets and merchandise. 

With the Blues set to be impacted by the new restrictions, Conte offered his sympathies to the club he managed for two seasons. The 52-year-old won the Premier League and FA Cup during his short tenure at Stamford Bridge. 

In a press conference ahead of Tottenham’s meeting with Manchester United on Saturday, Conte said (via Football.London): “Honestly I have just listened to this situation. This morning we had a training session. [It] is not easy, is not easy. 

“Honestly, it’s a pity, also because I was coach in this club, in Chelsea, I enjoyed two seasons. Also, I won two titles, I worked in this club. 

“It’s a pity to listen to this situation, it’s not simple for the players, it’s not simple for Thomas Tuchel, for the fans, for the whole environment, Chelsea environment.”

He added: “Honestly, I hope that in general, that this situation between Russia and Ukraine is going to finish, and to find peace, because it’s too much important. And then, other situations that are coming, from this conflict. 

“I think that it’s not right. I for hope the best, for this club, because I worked in this club, I enjoyed the two seasons.

“For sure, I love the team, the club, that I worked in, in the past. Every team that worked in the past. I hope for the best for them.”

Spurs Web Opinion 

Chelsea’s ownership has been extremely controversial for a number of years now and it was inevitable that they would be caught up eat some point, and it looks like that time is now. 

It will be interesting to see what comes of this as Abramovich can’t be in control of selling the club at the moment, which puts them in some sort of limbo. 

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