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Chelsea 'regret' over ref claims

Chelsea have expressed "regret" over the initial statement that alleged referee Mark Clattenburg had racially abused midfielder John Obi Mikel, and the subsequent impact on him and his family. Clattenburg was cleared by The FA of any wrongdoing.

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Referees' union: Clattenburg deserves 'apology' from Chelsea

Alan Leighton, the national secretary of the referees union Prospect, said: "Mark Clattenburg deserves a full and unreserved apology from Chelsea. He deserves compensation for loss of earnings, damage to his reputation and stress.

Chelsea's Mikel (centre) with referee Mark Clattenburg. Credit: Nick Potts/PA Archive

"In addition, Chelsea should make a sizeable donation to Show Racism the Red Card and Kick It Out to help the fight against racism in football and beyond."

He added: "This was a charge brought on the flimsiest of evidence that should never have got to this stage. The internal inquiry mounted by Chelsea and their QC rested on a dossier of evidence consisting of just one witness statement in relation to the specific allegation against Mark.

"This matter should never have been made public and should have been dealt with confidentially."

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