Chelsea Football Club has parted ways with their commercial director Damian Willoughby less than a month into his new role after evidence of “inappropriate behaviour” surfaced.
Willoughby began his second stint at Chelsea earlier this month following the club’s takeover by an investment group led by Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital. He had also worked previously for Manchester City and EA Sports before returning to Chelsea as its commercial director as the club looked to maximise revenue through off-field ventures.
“Evidence of inappropriate messages sent by Mr Willoughby, prior to his appointment at Chelsea FC earlier this month, has recently been provided to and investigated by the club,” a club spokesperson said.
“While they were sent prior to his employment at the club, such behaviour runs absolutely counter to the workplace environment and corporate culture being established by the club’s new ownership.”
“The club’s owners are working tirelessly to set and achieve the highest standards both on and off the pitch, and are determined to establish and nurture a culture of transparency, accountability, inclusivity, diversity and opportunity”.
Although their statement does not go into detail about the nature of his misconduct, it is being reported that Willoughby sent explicit messages to Chelsea’s football finance agent Catalina Kim prior to his appointment.
This latest scandal is another in a string of many that Todd Boehly has had to deal with since taking over the club from the previous owner. In his first year in charge, he has sacked Thomas Tuchel and seen the departures of beloved club figures Petr Cech and Marina Granovskaia.