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Chelsea reach settlement with victims of historical racial abuse in youth team

Civil case settled

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Chelsea v Everton - Premier League Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Chelsea have reached an out-of-court settlement with the four former youth players who had launched a civil claim against the club in 2020 after suffering racial abuse in the 1980s and 1990s.

The case was set to go to High Court next month, but Chelsea ensured that no airing of any laundry, dirty or otherwise, was going to take place by stepping around our own insurers (who were handling the case) and reaching a settlement — undisclosed, as usual — with the victims.

“The club is pleased that we have been able to conclude a settlement of these claims without any further litigation. We will continue to offer support to the former players concerned through our dedicated Player Support Service.”

-Chelsea spokesperson; source: The Athletic

No amount of money can ever repay or undo what happened of course, but hopefully can repair some of the harm done.

“This is a historic moment for our incredibly brave clients who have spoken out about their horrendous experiences that they suffered over many years at Chelsea Football Club as young boys at the hands of their football coaches.

“This settlement will hopefully go some way in repairing the harm and ongoing trauma caused to our clients who were just children when the abuse was inflicted on them by those in positions of trust.

“Through our clients’ courage we believe that this will prompt other victims of racial abuse to come forward and our clients hope that this case will prevent others from enduring what they had to.”

-Players’ lawyers statement; source: The Athletic

The details of what had gone on at the club during that time were revealed in harrowing detail during the independent inquiry in 2019 by Barnardo’s. Chelsea issued a “full apology” and were quick to highlight the modern safeguarding practices that are now in place at the club.