Chelsea have escaped punishment for alleged antisemitic chanting by their fans during a Europa League clash in Hungary after UEFA closed proceedings on the case.
Despite the club themselves strongly condemning the behaviour of their fans during the away clash at Vidi FC in December, and UEFA's initial charge of racism, it is understood that the governing body have been unable to gather the sufficient evidence to support the case.
As reported by the Guardian, this has prevented the club from receiving any repercussions, which could've included a partial stadium closure in European fixtures. The fans were said to have used a chant referencing Tottenham Hotspur in the opening minutes of the group stage game, using the slur 'Yids'.
And, after the game, the club were quick to release a strongly worded statement aimed at the perpetrators. A spokesman declared: “Antisemitism and any other kind of race-related or religious hatred is abhorrent to this club and the overwhelming majority of our fans.
"It has no place at Chelsea or in any of our communities. We have stated this loud and clear on many occasions from the owner, the board, coaches and players.
“Any individuals that can’t summon the brainpower to comprehend this simple message and are found to have shamed the club by using antisemitic or racist words or actions will face the strongest possible action from the club.”
But, despite this admission, UEFA were still apparently unable to gather enough evidence to pin the club with a guilty charge, releasing a statement proclaiming: “The CEDB [control, ethics and disciplinary body] has decided to close the disciplinary proceedings against Chelsea FC.”
The Blues will face Dynamo Kyiv in the last 16 of the Europa League, with the first leg scheduled for Thursday, March 7th at Stamford Bridge.