Chelsea 'beach' inquiry goes on

The Premier League today denied they have cleared Chelsea in the probe into their “beach” of a pitch and insisted the investigation into the controversial Stamford Bridge clash with Charlton is ongoing.

The Premier League today denied they have cleared Chelsea in the probe into their “beach” of a pitch and insisted the investigation into the controversial Stamford Bridge clash with Charlton is ongoing.

Addicks chief executive Peter Varney demanded a replay of the January 11 fixture, which Chelsea won 4-1 on a heavily-sanded playing surface described as a “beach” by Blues boss Claudio Ranieri.

Chelsea chairman Ken Bates said today the league had “dismissed the complaint out of hand”.

But that clai was rebuffed by Connaught Place chiefs, who will hold a meeting - probably early next week – with Chelsea and Charlton officials to discuss the issue.

A league statement read: “The Premier League board has set up a formal inquiry to look into this matter, which will be convened at the earliest opportunity.

“No decision has yet been taken on whether or not the game should replayed.

“The inquiry, once it has considered all the evidence, will then decide whether any further action is necessary.”

Bates was quoted today as saying: “The Premier League have dismissed the complaint out of hand, and there will be no replay.

“The fact is we staged the game on a good playing surface.”

Bates also criticised Charlton for their actions after of the game.

“We had a lot of respect for that club,” he added.

“But respect has to be earned, and it hasn’t done their reputation any good by carrying on the way they did after the game.

“They played the Tom Jones song ’The Green, Green Grass of Home’ at their next home game. However, we have prepared a response which will amuse our fans.”

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