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Chelsea’s Kai Havertz ready to pay for own away travel amid sanctions

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Chelsea forward Kai Havertz has said he would pay for his own travel to away matches while the Premier League club struggles to operate under government restrictions that have impacted their spending.

Chelsea’s Russian owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the U.K. government and the club is operating under a special licence.

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“I would pay, it’s no problem. That’s not a big deal for us,” Havertz told reporters on Tuesday, with an FA Cup quarterfinal clash at Middlesbrough coming up three days after their trip to Lille in the Champions League.

“For us to come to the games, that’s the most important thing. I think there are a lot of harder things in the world at the moment if we have to take the train or the bus to an away game. I would pay, it’s no problem.

“It’s not easy. I think such a situation has not happened at Chelsea before, so it’s a little bit strange, but we are professionals and sometimes situations like this can happen.”

Manager Thomas Tuchel had said the European champions had to make adjustments in how many staff are travelling and staying in Lille, where they play their Champions League quarterfinal second leg on Wednesday.

The German coach said the need to travel by air was not about “luxury and bling-bling” but about arriving fresh for matches amid a hectic schedule.

“This is just a professional level of sports, where we play with two days between matches with our opponent having four days between matches. And we arrive with the possibilities of injuries,” Tuchel said.

“For that, it is better to arrive with a plane rather than a bus.”

Chelsea have also asked for the game at Middlesbrough to be played behind closed doors for “sporting integrity” because they are unable to sell tickets due to restrictions imposed by the government licence. The move was slammed by the Championship side, describing the move as “ironic in the extreme.”



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