Chelsea's match against Lille set to go ahead, UEFA confirms

By Sports Desk March 16, 2022

Chelsea's Champions League match against Lille is set to take place as scheduled on Wednesday, UEFA has confirmed.

Last week, Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the United Kingdom government in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

His assets have been frozen and restrictions have been placed on Chelsea, who cannot sell any new match tickets or merchandise and have caps on the amount they are able to spend to facilitate games being played both home and away.

Abramovich was subsequently sanctioned by the European Union (EU), which cast further doubt over the second leg of Chelsea's last-16 tie in Lille.

However, Thomas Tuchel's team have travelled to northern France and UEFA has confirmed that the match is set to go ahead.

"As it stands, the match is taking place as scheduled," UEFA told Stats Perform on Wednesday morning (GMT).

UEFA added that it "is fully committed to always implementing relevant EU and international sanctions".

A statement from European football's governing body explained: "Our understanding is that the present case is assessed in the context of the licence issued in the UK which allows Chelsea FC to continue minimum football activity whilst providing a safeguard that no financial gain will result for Mr Abramovich.

"We will work with the EU and relevant member states to ensure we have full clarity and remain in lockstep with all relevant and applicable measures in line with latest developments."

On Tuesday, Chelsea asked for their FA Cup match against Middlesbrough next weekend to be played behind closed doors in the interest of "sporting integrity", as the Blues are unable to sell tickets to any travelling away fans.

However, that request angered Middlesbrough and Chelsea subsequently withdrew it after widespread criticism.

Tuchel's side lead Lille 2-0 from the first leg thanks to goals from Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic at Stamford Bridge three weeks ago.

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