Chelsea regret club's handling of Mark Clattenburg racism allegation

The Blues regret the speed with which they issued the complaint and the ‘impact the intense media scrutiny had’ during the fall-out from the match against Manchester United
Chelsea have released a statement detailing their regret at the way they handled their accusation that Mark Clattenburg racially abused John Obi Mikel in their clash against Manchester United.

The joint statement with the Professional Game Match Officials and Premier League revealed the club’s regrets at the speed in which they issued the complaint and the ‘subsequent impact the intense media scrutiny had on Mark Clattenburg and his family.’

The incident relates to the match on October 28 and Clattenburg has since been cleared of directing any racist abuse towards the Blues midfielder.

The joint statement reads: "Following the completion of the investigation by The FA into the case involving Chelsea FC and Mark Clattenburg, the Premier League and Chelsea FC requested, and PGMOL agreed, to meet in order to discuss the issues surrounding the reporting of the allegation.

15/2 Chelsea are 15/2 with bet365 to beat Fulham 2-1
"The Select Group appreciated the opportunity to speak to Bruce Buck personally. His willingness to engage and answer all the questions put to him was welcomed.

"There was a constructive and open discussion. The club regrets not having given more consideration before issuing a statement on the evening of Sunday 28th October. The club also regrets the subsequent impact the intense media scrutiny had on Mark Clattenburg and his family.

"The referees accept that, given Chelsea FC had received a good faith claim from one of their employees, the club had an obligation under FA rules to report the allegation.

"There was recognition by all parties that the impartiality and integrity of refereeing in this country remains paramount. Chelsea FC made it clear they would welcome Mark Clattenburg back to Stamford Bridge in the future and PGMOL would have no issue in appointing him to a Chelsea FC match going forward. 

"It was a thoroughly professional meeting. All parties now believe it is time to draw a line under this incident, learn from it and move on for the good of all Premier League clubs, players and match officials."