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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 June, 2005, 18:30 GMT 19:30 UK
Chelsea defiant over Arsenal feud
Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck
Bullish Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck declared that the Blues' relationship with Arsenal would be hard to rebuild after the Ashley Cole tapping-up probe.

"Anything is possible, but it will be very difficult to have a good relationship with Arsenal.

"They are in our league and we have to deal with them, but when you look at it, Arsenal had an agenda," he claimed.

"None of the scenarios I'm thinking about are positive when it comes to Chelsea and Arsenal, but we can try."

Buck said the Blues are almost certain to appeal against their 300,000 fine and the 200,000 fine handed out to manager Jose Mourinho.

"We are very disappointed, shocked in fact, at the tribunal," added Buck.

"In its findings of fact, it clearly said that Chelsea Football Club had been approached by agents on behalf of Ashley Cole.

Every pence and pound is important to Chelsea but there is also a principle
Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck

"They then came to the conclusion that the meeting constituted an approach from Chelsea.

"We disagree with that conclusion and we think the sanctions are totally disproportionate to the sin.

"We will appeal and we look forward to making this right at some point in the future.

"Our view is that it breaches the rules if you make an approach with the intention of entering into a contract with the player. But we had no intentions of doing that and we made that clear to Arsenal."

Buck also revealed the club was furious Mourinho had been hit with a 200,000 fine and said the Portuguese manager was equally keen to overturn the decision.

"With respect to Jose, he was not an active participant in this saga," said Buck.

"In previous tapping up situations the manager was not accused of breaching any rules. We think it was inappropriate to first charge Jose and then to fine him too.

"But we told him we were likely to appeal and he's looking forward to that every bit as much as we are.

"This is a lot of money whoever you are. Every pence and every pound is important to Chelsea but there is also a principle here."

Interview: Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein

Interview: Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck

Report: BBC Sport's Adam Parsons


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