Chelsea’s bank account has been temporarily stopped by Barclays following the UK government’s sanctioning of Roman Abramovich.
The suspension is in place because the bank needs time to evaluate the license Chelsea has been granted to continue football-related activities.
Chelsea is optimistic that the suspension will be lifted soon. Chelsea’s business credit cards have also been temporarily revoked.
After Abramovich had “his assets frozen, a prohibition on dealings with UK individuals and businesses, a travel ban, and transit sanctions” imposed on him, the UK government granted Chelsea permission to continue with football-related operations on Thursday.
The restrictions are designed to prevent the 55-year-old from earning any money in the United Kingdom, but the government has granted Chelsea a special license that allows fixtures to be completed, employees to be paid, and existing ticket holders to attend matches.
Chelsea, on the other hand, is currently unable to issue new contracts to players or personnel, undertake any transfer activity, or sell new match tickets.
What does this imply for Chelsea’s future?
Chelsea’s bank account being suspended by Barclays will have major ramifications for the club.
Because their bank account has been stopped, they are unable to spend any money, even on the tiniest of purchases, let alone larger expenditures such as paying their players.
The problem for Barclays is that while the bank account is in Chelsea’s name, the owner remains Roman Abramovich, who has been sanctioned by the UK government.
Nobody in the United Kingdom is permitted to do business with Abramovich. Chelsea has an unique license to conduct their football-related activities, but Barclays must be satisfied that continuing to provide financial services to Chelsea is a risk they are willing to take. The majority of banks are quite risk averse.
They refuse to do business with individuals who have been sanctioned by the government. Just because the UK government says Chelsea may keep playing games doesn’t mean Barclays is happy with the agreement.
It’s perfectly legal for them to stop providing banking services entirely. However, this is only a temporary suspension, and Chelsea are hoping that it will be lifted soon.
And, in their opinion, it needs to be lifted as soon as possible since it could have major consequences for Chelsea’s short-term prospects.
The bank will want to make sure Chelsea is only spending money that the government has given them permission to spend.