Sick of being made a scapegoat for both Chelsea’s patchy league form and the internal rifts that are threatening to destabilise the club, Andriy Shevchenko (above, left) has angrily denied claims that he has been seeking to undermine Jose Mourinho.
Shevchenko has been accused of everything from demanding a transfer to suggesting replacements for Mourinho, but has been most hurt by claims that he is acting as a snitch for Roman Abramovich, keeping the owner posted on what is being said about him in the dressing room. Although it is clear that Abramovich was a driving force in his arrival from Milan last Summer, Shevchenko denies that he has any special relationship with the owner, blasting claims he has the owner’s ear as “bullshit”
“I am being made a scapegoat for things that have nothing to do with me,” he said today. “A lot of things have been said which aren’t true. They have caused a lot of hurt to myself and my family. I am a footballer, not a politician. My job is to play, that’s all. It is what I’ve been doing since I was nine years old. People are crossing the limits in what they are saying about me.
“It’s bullshit. There are new quotes every day and I don’t even know where they’ve come from. There are things written about my relationship with Roman Abramovich which have been overexaggerated. My relationship with him is the same as every other player. He’s the president and I am a player – it is entirely professional. I see Abramovich in the dressing-room sometimes or occasionally at training. We might have a quick word with each other but that is natural as we both speak Russian. Maybe I shouldn’t speak Russian. Maybe that gives people the wrong idea.”