03:25 GMT +322 August 2019
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    Chelsea Football Club Apologises for 1970s Child Sexual Abuse - Statement

    © AFP 2019 / Daniel Leal-Olivas
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    MOSCOW, (Sputnik) – Chelsea football club issued a statement on Tuesday apologising for child sexual and racial abuse that occurred in the club between the 1970s and 1990s.

    "Following the disclosures of non-recent child sexual abuse perpetrated at the Club in the 1970s, we set out our intention to do the right thing - to fully support those affected and carry out an exhaustive investigation into what occurred to ensure that abhorrent abuse like this can never happen again," the statement read.

    According to the review, Eddie Heath, who worked for the club in the 1970s and died in early 1980s, was a dangerous child abuser.

    Chelsea’s Board of Directors also asked the Barnardo’s UK-based child charity organisation to investigate racial abuse in the club.

    "Based on the evidence available, Barnardo’s found that there is overwhelming information indicating that a member of staff at the Club during the 1980s and 1990s subjected young players to bullying and racially abusive behaviour. Furthermore, this took place in an environment where racially abusive behaviour became normalised and there was an absence of the safeguarding systems and structures that exist today", the statement read further.

    The club apologised to all players who experienced such behaviour.

    "We are doing, and will continue to do, everything we can to ensure that those boys, girls, men and women who play for this Club – and indeed anyone who works for or with the Club – will never have to endure the terrible experiences which these young players suffered", the statement read.

    Chelsea is one of the oldest English football clubs founded in 1905 and is among England’s most successful clubs.

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