Chelsea have had their bank account with Barclays temporarily suspended relating to the UK government sanctions on owner Roman Abramovich.
Abramovich was sanctioned on Thursday along with a number of other Russian individuals in response to the country’s invasion of Ukraine. It means no businesses or individuals in the UK are allowed to do conduct business with him or his companies.
The result has been that Chelsea are still able to operate in a footballing capacity after being granted special license to do so, but business transactions – including ticket sales not already covered by existing season tickets, new player contracts and commercial sales have had to stop.
There are also limits on how much Chelsea can spend in terms of travel to and from matches.
Now, as Barclays figure out exactly what they can and cannot do with the club in terms of banking services while government sanctions are in force, Sky Sports has reported that Chelsea’s bank account has been suspended for the time being.
It is said that Barclays wish to be sure they are on the right side of the law if they continue to provide Chelsea with banking services and that the club will only be engaging in transactions permitted under the current sanctions.
Chelsea, meanwhile, are thought to be confident the banking suspension will soon be lifted.
The Times has similarly reported that Chelsea’s club credit cards have been frozen, threatening the Blues with ‘financial paralysis’. Despite a license to continue football operations, it is said that a ‘risk averse’ strategy from provider Barclaycard has seen corporate credit cards suspended.
The Athletic adds a bizarre twist to the story, explaining that the corporate credit card freeze has even prevented the team coach from being filled up with fuel ahead of this weekend's clash with Newcastle - at least the match is at home and not in the north east.
Ironically, manager Thomas Tuchel had earlier said, "As long as we have enough shirts, and as long as the bus is full of fuel, we will arrive and we will be competitive."