Caneiro Exits Under a Cloud

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Chelsea doctor Eva Carneiro has left the club six weeks after receiving intense criticism from boss Jose Mourinho during a match against Swansea where she subsequently losing her place on the bench.  

Carneiro, who is a sports medical specialist from Gibraltar had been with Chelsea since 2009 where she was appointed by Andres Villas-Boas and stayed at the club under the management of Roberto Di Matteo, Rafa Benitez and current manager Jose Mourinho by whom she attracted criticism from.  

The whole episode began during Chelsea’s draw with Swansea in which Carneiro and head physio Jon Fearn rushed onto the pitch in order treat the injured Eden Hazard. Mourinho was seen at pitch-side furious with his medical team which left Chelsea down to 9 players following an earlier sending off. After the match Mourinho called the medical team “naive” and “impulsive” for their role in forcing Chelsea down to 9 men temporarily at a critical period of the match when Mourinho felt that the injury wasn’t of a serious nature.  

In the days after the incident, Carneiro was instantly stripped of her place on the bench and told she wouldn’t be allowed to attend training sessions or even enter the team hotel. After being placed on leave and after being due back to work last Friday, Carneiro has now decided that it would be in everyone’s best interests to leave the club. Carneiro is also now understood to be assessing legal options with a view to suing the club citing constructive dismissal as the reason.  

In a complex case between the two parties, it was also confirmed last week that the FA are investigating a complaint about abusive language aimed at the medical team by the Chelsea manager. The abuse was understood to have been a derogatory comment made in Portuguese towards the Portuguese speaking Carneiro when she returned to the bench. If found guilty of using offensive, insulting or abusive language then Mourinho could face up to a five-match ban.  

For Carneiro, after everything she has achieved with the team, it is a sad end to her career at Stamford Bridge after six years of service. FA board member Heather Rabbats expressed her “sadness and anger” at the whole scenario following Carneiro’s decision to leave. “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.”  

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