Chelsea’s Eva Carneiro, the club doctor who was at the centre of the controversy surrounding Jose Mourinho after the clubs 2-2 draw with Swansea City on the opening day of the season, has decided not to return to work six weeks after the incident in Chelsea’s opening game.
With the Blues already down to ten men after the sending off of Thibaut Courtois for a foul on Swansea striker Bafetimbi Gomis, Carneiro and Chelsea’s physio Jon Fearn both ran on to the pitch to treat Eden Hazard who was on the turf with an injury. Despite the medical team having been called on more than once by the match referee, Jose Mourinho was furious with them for being “impulsive and naïve”, according to his post match comments. Their decision to treat Hazard meant he had to leave the field of play with just minutes left on the clock, leaving Chelsea with nine men for some of the closing stages of the match.
Mourinho screamed at them to leave the forward alone, reportedly calling Carneiro a ‘son of a bitch’ in Portuguese. This has led the FA to investigate the possibility that the Chelsea manager used ‘foul or abusive language’ towards her that, if found guilty, could lead to a suspension for the Portuguese maestro.
Carneiro was demoted in the aftermath of the game, with Mourinho deciding that she should no longer be on the bench for Chelsea’s matches or attend training sessions, but would still treat the players at the club’s Cobham facility.
Carneiro had not returned to her position at the club and was in conversation with her lawyers. Chelsea wanted the doctor to return to her position but today it has been revealed that she has decided not to and it is believed that she is considering legal action.
Despite his assertion that he has a ‘good relationship’ with his medical staff, the news will come as a blow to Mourinho and Chelsea, especially considering that the Chelsea manager came under a lot of criticism in the aftermath of the incident.
Heather Rabbatts, a Football Association board member and chair of the inclusion advisory board, has expressed her ‘sadness and anger’ that Carneiro has decided to leave the defending Premier League champions. She said, “News of Dr Eva Carneiro’s departure from Chelsea FC makes me feel sadness and anger. Eva was one of the few very senior women in the game, a highly respected doctor who has acted with professional integrity in difficult circumstances and whose skills have been highly praised by her colleagues, the club and governing bodies”.
Though Chelsea have refused to comment on the incident, saying that they “do not comment on internal employment issues”, the press office refused to deny that Carneiro has left the club when contacted by Sky Sports.