Chelsea owner Todd Boehly has apologised after the wording on a banner honouring late club great Ray Wilkins was tweaked while producers of TV show “Ted Lasso” filmed scenes at Stamford Bridge for one of its episodes.
Since Wilkins’ death at the age of 61 in 2018, a banner has been on permanent display at Chelsea’s stadium reading: “They don’t make them like Ray anymore.”
For the “Ted Lasso” episode that aired recently on Apple TV+, the wording on the banner was altered to say “Roy” instead of “Ray” — a nod to a character in the series, Roy Kent, who is a fictional former Chelsea player returning to the club.
That led to some fans criticising Chelsea, with the club’s former stadium announcer, Neil Barnett, taking aim at Boehly and co-owner Behdad Eghbali — who led the purchase of the London team in May last year from Roman Abramovich — in a tweet late Wednesday.
Boehly, who rarely posts on Twitter, replied saying the new ownership “had nothing to do (with) these arrangements” and that a deal with Apple TV was struck at the start of 2022.
“We are sorry it affected so many and mostly we care about Ray and his family,” Boehly said in his reply.
Ross Wilkins, the son of Ray Wilkins, didn’t appear to take offence, tweeting Thursday: “This is TV and certainly nothing to do with the new regime.”
The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust said the banner was paid for by fans and many believe altering the wording was “disrespectful.”
“We have expressed our disappointment to club officials,” the trust said. “We expect that CFC will address this in due course.”
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