Chelsea have announced losses of £145.6m after tax for the year despite being crowned European champions in May.
Thomas Tuchel’s appointment to replace Frank Lampard at the end of January transformed the team’s fortunes on the pitch as they went on to defeat Manchester City in the Champions League final.
But the club’s financial results for the year to 30 June 2021 have been severely affected by playing games with no crowds because of the Covid-19 pandemic, while there was also a reduction in profit on player sales.
Chelsea’s turnover increased from £387.8m to £416.8m thanks to an increase in broadcasting revenue. But after posting a profit of £39.5m in the previous financial year, this year’s losses are significantly more than the £102m in the 2019-20 season.
Chelsea’s accounts state they are “reliant on Fordstam Limited for its continued financial support”. The company is owned by Roman Abramovich, and has indicated it will continue to support the club “for the foreseeable future”. As well as winning the Champions League for the second time, Chelsea finished fourth in the Premier League and reached the FA Cup final.
Meanwhile, Tuchel has admitted Chelsea’s preparations to host Liverpool on Sunday will include a “trial and error” selection process as he counts the continued injury and Covid-19 toll in the wake of Wednesday’s 1-1 draw with Brighton.
Reece James should miss out against their title rivals with a hamstring strain, and the extent of the England wing-back’s problem could prove pivotal to the Blues’ campaign. Chelsea will sweat on Thiago Silva’s thigh issue and Andreas Christensen’s back problem – but also on a host of players still suffering lasting effects after contracting Covid, including Timo Werner.
Tuchel said: “[Werner’s] not good, not in training. And that’s because of Covid. We don’t know any more at the moment, and nobody knows quite how the players [who have had Covid] will react. We play trial and error and see what we get. That’s why I’m protecting my team. We can play much better but we need a full squad over weeks and weeks.”
Romelu Lukaku made it two goals in two matches against Brighton – his first start in 10 weeks after ankle trouble and Covid isolation. But Tuchel admitted he must continue to carefully monitor Lukaku’s continued recovery.
“I’m surprised with what he’s doing, actually very surprised,” Tuchel said.
“But I don’t know how long he can do it. We will see and we will try it but I don’t know.”