Roman Abramovich’s decision to sell Chelsea was described by Thomas Tuchel as “big news” that had “not sunk in yet” after the FA Cup win at Luton.
Russian-Israeli billionaire Abramovich confirmed his intention to sell the Stamford Bridge club in a statement released just prior to Wednesday’s tie, amid Russia’s continued invasion of Ukraine.
The 55-year-old has owned the Blues since 2003 and helped steer them to 19 major trophies.
But his glittering reign in west London is close to an end, with a consortium of billionaires already making their interest in a deal public.
Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss and American investor Todd Boehly are understood to be two of the parties joining forces and preparing a bid for the Blues.
Abramovich could come under UK government sanctions given his proximity to the Russian state, though he is also understood to have been attempting to broker a peace deal between Russia and Ukraine.
Asked after the 3-2 fifth-round victory over Luton to sum up Abramovich’s impact at the club, Chelsea boss Tuchel replied: “It’s a bit too early because it’s big news.
“It’s a bit too early to speak, because I can only think about Chelsea with Roman Abramovich. So it’s very hard for me. It hasn’t sunk in yet that this is going to stop. It’s a massive change of course.
“We did not talk about it (before the Luton match). We accepted it. The players have internet connections, they watch TV so of course they knew, they get messages. But still we focused in the preparation only on sports.
“And maybe some players are more affected, some less, but in the end we managed to focus, grow into this game and find the key top win it.
“I don’t think I need to talk about it. I’m very sure the club will speak to us and the players.
“I’m not so much worried because I still feel privileged and in a good place. And I still hope and trust for the best. I’m not so much the person who worries about things I cannot influence.
“It’s big news, it will be a big change, but I’m also never afraid of change, and will focus on what I can influence, and this staff and team at Cobham.”
In the statement released by Chelsea, Abramovich said: “As I have stated before, I have always taken decisions with the club’s best interest at heart.
“In the current situation, I have therefore taken the decision to sell the club, as I believe this is in the best interest of the club, the fans, the employees, as well as the club’s sponsors and partners.
“Please know that this has been an incredibly difficult decision to make, and it pains me to part with the club in this manner. However, I do believe this is in the best interest of the club.”
Abramovich also pledged to wipe out his £1.5billion loan, as well as divert all net proceeds from the sale to aid those suffering from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.