Premier League investigates Chelsea's signings of Willian and Eto'o

A Premier League investigation probing the Roman Abramovich era at Chelsea will reportedly include the signings of Willian and Samuel Eto'o.

The Times reports the inquiry is looking into Chelsea's 'secret transfer-related' payments made by the Blues during Abramovich's time at the club (2003-2022) and, among other checks, will scrutinise the financial transactions of the duo, who signed from Russian outfit Anzhi Makhachkala in August 2013. Brazilian winger Willian joined the Stamford Bridge outfit for £30 million 10 years ago and in the same transfer window former Barcelona striker Eto'o followed suit. In addition to this, the report claims that financial records indicate that payments may have been made to 'Russian entities' that were separate to any transfer fee. The payments were uncovered during the due diligence process that was undertaken by Todd Boehly's Clearlake Capital consortium when they were buying the club from Abramovich in 2022.

Chelsea's current ownership made it clear this is something that pre-dates them but the alleged payments, which reportedly are in the seven figure mark, appear not to have been registered as part of the club’s annual financial reporting to the FA, Premier League and UEFA - which would be in breach of their rules. The Blues have already agreed a €10 million (£8.57 million) settlement with UEFA to cover Financial Fair Play rule breaches. But more sanctions could come their way, potentially in the form of a points deduction or a transfer ban.