Chelsea have now openly admitted that the confidentiality clause in their settlement with abuse victim Gary Johnson was “inappropriate”
In a very lengthly statement released on this weekend, the club insisted that it was a “very different” place to the 1970s and claimed they have asked an external law firm to review how they handled Johnson’s case.
“It is clear that Gary Johnson suffered unacceptably while in our employment in the 1970s for which the club apologises profusely,” the statement said.
“In the summer of 2014 we received a letter of claim from Slater & Gordon, a prominent law firm which handles sexual abuse claims.
“They informed us Mr Johnson had been sexually assaulted by Eddie Heath, who had been employed by the club in the 1970s, and that Mr Johnson would bring a claim seeking compensation due to the fact he considered that the club was liable for the abuse.”
“Slater & Gordon confirmed that prior to bringing the claim to the club, the allegations of abuse had been reported to the Professional Footballers’ Association in 2013 and then subsequently to the police. We treated Mr Johnson’s claim very seriously and immediately instructed external solicitors. After requesting some further information, settlement negotiations commenced between Mr Johnson’s lawyers and a firm of solicitors, which specialises in abuse claims, appointed by our insurer.