What it means for Chelsea
The Government has told Chelsea it cannot even sell tickets to matches and any takeover is now on hold as part of the order.
Mr Abramovich is described by the Foreign Office in a new statement on the sanctions as “one of the few oligarchs from the 1990s to maintain prominence under Putin”.
Nadine Dorries, the Culture Secretary, has said that Chelsea will still be able to play matches and pay staff.
“Putin’s attack on Ukraine continues and we are witnessing new levels of evil by the hour. Today the Government has announced further sanctions against individuals linked to the Russian Government. This list includes Roman Abramovich, the owner of Chelsea Football Club,” she said
“Our priority is to hold those who have enabled the Putin regime to account. Today’s sanctions obviously have a direct impact on Chelsea and its fans. We have been working hard to ensure the club and the national game are not unnecessarily harmed by these important sanctions.
“To ensure the club can continue to compete and operate we are issuing a special licence that will allow fixtures to be fulfilled, staff to be paid and existing ticketholders to attend matches while, crucially, depriving Abramovich of benefiting from his ownership of the club.
“I know this brings some uncertainty, but the Government will work with the league and clubs to keep football being played while ensuring sanctions hit those intended. Football clubs are cultural assets and the bedrock of our communities. We’re committed to protecting them.”
‘The blood of the Ukrainian people is on their hands’
The seven who have been sanctioned have a combined net worth of more than £15billion, the Government said in a press release announcing the move.
The Government release goes on to say Mr Abramovich has had a “close relationship for decades” with the Russian President.
“This association has included obtaining a financial benefit or other material benefit from Putin and the Government of Russia,” it says.
Liz Truss, the Foreign Secretary, said: “Today’s sanctions show once again that oligarchs and kleptocrats have no place in our economy or society. With their close links to Putin they are complicit in his aggression.
“The blood of the Ukrainian people is on their hands. They should hang their heads in shame.
“Our support for Ukraine will not waver. We will not stop in this mission to ramp up the pressure on the Putin regime and choke off funds to his brutal war machine.”