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Chelsea's Brawlboys


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Chelsea are at the centre of an FA probe after a training ground friendly turned into a mass brawl.

The practice game, arranged at short notice by Chelsea on Wednesday, was abandoned after just 35 minutes amid amazing scenes. Players, coaches and officials from Chelsea's reserve team and United Arab Emirates side Al Alhi traded blows for five minutes.

Chelsea players were assaulted with karate kicks, knee-high tackles and had their hair pulled out and their eyes gouged.

Defender Jack Cork, who has since gone on loan to Coventry and sported a black eye in his new side's 1-0 defeat to Swansea, was put in a headlock and repeatedly hit.

The referee, who will not be named by the FA, has written to Soho Square with the full, astonishing details of the battle.

Incredibly the drama was played out in front of scores of children who were taking part in a Football in the Community scheme at Chelsea's Cobham training ground.

The scenes, which were recorded by the club's in-house TV station ChelseaTV and are now locked in a safe, were so brutal some kids fled in tears.

A stunned eye witness revealed: "There were people being chased all over the pitch, eyes were being gouged, hair was being pulled out and one of the Al Hilal players shoved his fingers up the nose of Gael Kakuta. Every player was involved but Chelsea didn't start it."

The Chelsea team included youngsters being groomed for the first team, such as Rhys Taylor, Jeffrey Bruma, Carl Magnay, Kakuta and Cork.

But trouble flared after half-an-hour when Chelsea left-back Ben Gordon was taken out by a two-footed tackle above the knee.

Although the game continued the ref was forced to abandon it when both teams began trading punches just before half-time.

Cork was put in a headlock and beaten while Jeffrey Bruma had two Al Hilal players on his back and karate kicked by another.

Chelsea's opponents were not even allowed back into the changing rooms and were put straight on to the team bus in their kit.

The FA confirmed last night that the incident had taken place.

A Soho Square source said: "The FA supplied the ref. We have received his report and are considering the appropriate action. Chelsea didn't start it."

A Chelsea spokesman said: "There was an unfortunate incident."

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Chelsea have 'dealt with' a reported mass brawl that occurred at a training ground friendly.

A practice match between a Chelsea reserve team and Qatari side Al-Ahli allegedly descended into violence and was abandoned after just 35 minutes.

Chelsea, who organised the game at short notice, had been given a top-class referee by the Football Association.

The FA is expected to conduct an investigation into the incident although it is said the referee's report, already understood to be at the FA's new Wembley offices, points the blame directly at Al-Ahli.

A Chelsea spokesman said: "There was an unfortunate incident but it has been dealt with."

The Chelsea side included the likes of goalkeeper Rhys Taylor, defender Jeffrey Bruma, Carl Magnay, Gael Kakuta and defender Jack Cork, now on loan at Coventry.

SkySport.com

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