Middlesbrough chairman Gibson blasts Chelsea over ticket clash: Kick Buck out!

Middlesbrough chairman Steve Gibson has attacked Chelsea and called for counterpart Bruce Buck to be “kicked out” of football after attempts to have their FA Cup tie at Riverside stadium played without fans.

The Blues, who have been left in a state of limbo after owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the UK Government last week, announced on Tuesday that they cannot sell any new tickets for their trip to Middlesbrough this weekend.

The west London club have released a controversial statement urging the FA to make their quarter-final tie a behind-closed-doors fixture at the Riverside, claiming doing so is now a matter of ‘sporting integrity’.

In response, Gibson fumed to the Telegraph: “The words ‘sporting integrity’ and ‘Chelsea’ don’t belong in the same sentence. For 19 years, money has fuelled the success of Chelsea Football Club.

“Our fans, our club, our players and our manager have done nothing wrong. If Chelsea were to succeed, and the game be played behind closed doors, does that mean all the Premier League games have to be played behind closed doors? And all the Champions League games? And for what reason? Because of their owner, all the rest of us have to suffer.

“This has to be kicked out and [Chelsea chairman] Bruce Buck should be kicked out.

“We haven’t made our feelings known to the FA or Chelsea yet, because Chelsea haven’t contacted me.

“They haven’t had the courtesy of telling me this was going to happen, they just took it to the FA. The game is this weekend!

“These sanctions placed upon Chelsea were done so by the Government, not by football, not by Middlesbrough.

“It’s got to be kicked out and it’s abhorrent. This rotten football club, Chelsea. We pick up the newspapers and read about Abramovich and the way he conducted his life, and we see what’s going on in Ukraine, and it’s beyond comprehension. It really is.”

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