Chelsea have confirmed that they will join the five other English clubs in withdrawing from the proposed European Super League following widespread condemnation of the project.
Manchester City declared their withdrawal on Tuesday afternoon barely 48 hours following the European Super League unveiling.
English quartet Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester United and Tottenham followed City in backing out on Tuesday evening and past midnight UK time Chelsea revealed their intention to withdraw.
The Chelsea statement said: “As reported earlier this evening, Chelsea Football Club can confirm that it has begun the formal procedures for withdrawal from the group developing plans for a European Super League.
“Having joined the group late last week, we have now had time to consider the matter fully and have decided that our continued participation in these plans would not be in the best interests of the Club, our supporters or the wider football community.”
The European Super League project has drawn near universal condemnation from fans, players, coaches, federations and national governments.
Chelsea supporters voiced their disapproval with protests outside Stamford Bridge before Tuesday’s 0-0 Premier League draw with Brighton & Hove Albion.
Blues head coach Thomas Tuchel was reluctant to be drawn into the discussion around the European Super League, insisting he had not been informed around the detail of the project.
“Look at the owners here in Premier League, what they invest, the teams they build, the clubs they build,” Tuchel said post-game.
“It’s the most competitive league in the world and this is also because the owners built strong clubs and teams. Don’t forget it.
“I would like to hear arguments and I would like to hear the real points behind it, the real idea behind, the details behind it. I don’t have any details and it clearly does not feel good as a coach when you are asked all the time about it.
“That’s why I can only repeat I am not the right person to talk about it because I’ve not read one page of this idea.
“I believe strongly and I trust my club of course. I believe strongly that the owners are about competition because they’ve built a very, very competitive league and very competitive clubs.”
On the fan protests, Tuchel added: “My message is clear, we miss every supporter. We miss them for over a year, I don’t want to get used to playing in front of empty stadiums.
“I trust my club to take the right decisions, to be in the future a competitive club. And we miss our fans, there’s no doubt about it.”