Chelsea's Russian owner Roman Abramovich grants "stewardship and care" of club to charity

Chelsea’s Russian owner Roman Abramovich has handed over “stewardship and care” of the reigning Champions League holders to the club’s charitable foundation.

Mr Abramovich pledged he had always taken decisions with the “club’s best interest at heart” since taking over at Stamford Bridge in 2003, but in a short statement published on the eve of Thomas Tuchel’s team facing Liverpool in the Carabao Cup Final, the oligarch announced he was stepping aside.

He said the trustees of the charity are ‘currently in the best position to look after the interests’ at the Blues, who sit third in the English Premier League.

The website notice read: “During my nearly 20-year ownership of Chelsea FC, I have always viewed my role as a custodian of the Club, whose job it is ensuring that we are as successful as we can be today, as well as build for the future, while also playing a positive role in our communities. I have always taken decisions with the club’s best interest at heart. I remain committed to these values. That is why I am today giving trustees of Chelsea’s charitable Foundation the stewardship and care of Chelsea FC.

Chelsea's Russian owner Roman Abramovich applauds one of the team's five EPL title wins during his tenure. (Photo credit should read BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images)

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“I believe that currently they are in the best position to look after the interests of the club, players, staff, and fans.”

With his billionaire backing, his reign at Stamford Bridge saw Chelsea become major players in the transfer market and translated into onfield success with two Champions League wins, two Europa Leagues and five Premier League titles.

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