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Abramovich partner in hot water over ill-advised photograph

Martin Rose

UPDATE: Zhukova has apologized.

"This photograph, which has been published completely out of context, is of an artwork intended specifically as a commentary on gender and racial politics.

I utterly abhor racism, and would like to apologise to anyone who has been offended by this image."

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This isn't a good look for Roman Abramovich, and by extension it's not a good look for Chelsea FC either. Abramovich's partner, Dasha Zhukova, was recently interviewed by Russian fashion blog Buro 24/7, and accompanying the article there was a disturbing picture of her and a prop that was fairly well loaded with connotations of both racism and misogyny. Yahoo has more information (and the picture itself), and I don't want to speculate further on the issue, but it's probably safe to say that the photo was a very, very stupid idea.

I know that Ms. Zhukova's private life is private and she's not officially affiliated with the club in any way, but as Abramovich's partner and a regular match-goer -- and given that the club has been subjected to accusations of racism in the past -- I would call on her to clarify the situation and condemn what looks like an utterly indefensible photograph as soon as possible.

Comments are closed so as to avoid the inevitable racist backlash.