Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has admitted he had prior information Roman Abramovich would sell the club.
The Russian announced last week he had decided to leave the club after 19 years, in what was a response to Russia invading Ukraine.
The 55-year-old is a close ally of the Russian President, leading to talk of sanctions from the UK for the billionaire.
The decision caught many by surprise, including the players, and fans, with Tuchel admitting he had been informed early before Wednesday night’s decision.
“The moment when the announcement was done, when the news came out, I was in the away dressing room at Luton Town,” said Tuchel. “I knew a little bit before because I am of course in a direct line of communication with Petr and Marina.
“So I knew a bit before and it was more a process of knowing than actually one moment. It was a process of messages, a process of talks, it’s not like I had two weeks before of nothing and then “okay, it will be sold”. I could feel it coming, I could feel the possibility.
“It’s hard to describe my feelings and to put it into words. It’s strange, we did not see this coming until recently. For a very long time Chelsea was always a Roman Abramovich club in my point of view and was run by an unbelievably passionate and committed owner, who took the sport that we all love so much, football, so seriously,”
The Blues could be under new management soon, with a number of teams and individuals set to make official bids.