We were deeply disappointed to read today’s misleading headline in a national tabloid newspaper about our Founder, Paul Canoville.

Yesterday morning, Paul saw a very short clip circulating on social media of Conor Gallagher appearing to miss the handshake of a young mascot. Paul had spent time earlier that day with the mascots and was disappointed on seeing the video.

After being made aware of the full clip and realising that Conor was not at fault and had, in fact, been deep in preparation for the match and focused on the game ahead, Paul immediately removed his post on X and apologised.

Paul did not at any time directly or indirectly infer there were any racial or discriminatory motivations. To state that a former player who received heinous racial abuse throughout his career would suggest so is deeply disappointing.

Paul would like to conclude the matter by saying:

“I would like to reiterate that I made a mistake in sharing something without first seeing the whole video.  I have a deep respect for Conor as a footballer and a human being. We have his photo on our Foundation website supporting our initiatives with young people of all backgrounds and I always feel proud when I see him wearing the Chelsea captain’s armband”