Spurs set Chelsea £8m deadline over Arnesen

Chelsea have been given until Friday by Tottenham to pay about £8-million in compensation for Frank Arnesen or face a Premier League inquiry, after Arnesen was photographed aboard Roman Abramovich’s yacht in the Mediterranean.

Spurs believe the picture confirms that Arnesen held a secret meeting with the Chelsea owner in breach of league regulations and they responded by setting Chelsea a deadline of noon on Friday to resolve the matter. They would accept a player as part of a deal, notably the left-back, Wayne Bridge.

The compensation specified is considerably more than Chelsea want to pay but Spurs believe the photographs have given them significant leverage after more than two weeks of negotiations have failed to bring an agreement.

Chelsea run the risk of having points deducted if they gamble on going to a Premier League inquiry. The suspended three-point deduction they received recently for tapping up Ashley Cole would not automatically be triggered by a guilty verdict in this case, but it would be an option for an independent commission.

‘Having seen the pictures we have contacted Chelsea and set them a deadline for this matter to be resolved,” said Tottenham’s director of communications Donna Cullen.
‘If we do not reach a satisfactory agreement by noon on Friday we will make a formal complaint to the FA Premier League. We will also be looking to exercise other potential options.”

Those include holding Arnesen to the final two years of his contract and starting a civil action against Chelsea.

Arnesen’s meeting with Abramovich is understood to have taken place just off the coast of Sardinia. Chelsea said it was a ‘purely social occasion” between friends who happened to be in the same part of the world. —

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