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Chelsea Football Club has taken a significant step towards inclusivity by introducing a dedicated group for its Jewish supporters. This move follows Arsenal, another Premier

League team, which established its Jewish fan group earlier this year as part of an ongoing effort to combat antisemitism.

Chelsea made the announcement just before Rosh Hashanah, stating, "To mark the Jewish New Year, we are thrilled to introduce Chelsea Football Club's Jewish Supporters Group, with membership opportunities now available."

Both clubs have had to address instances of antisemitism among their fan bases in recent years. Chelsea faced criticism when some of its fans were heard chanting antisemitic songs shortly after the launch of an anti-hate campaign in 2018.

Under the ownership of Russian Jewish oligarch Roman Abramovich, Chelsea has intensified its initiatives against antisemitism. In 2021, the club partnered with the Anti-Defamation League, and it adorned its Stamford Bridge stadium with a commemorative mural honoring Jewish soccer players who were sent to Auschwitz. Additionally, Chelsea has sent fans found engaging in antisemitic behavior to educational tours at the Auschwitz memorial and museum.

Stephen Nelken, the founder of Chelsea's new Jewish supporters group and a lifelong Chelsea fan, expressed his admiration for the club's efforts in combating antisemitism and discrimination. He stated, "The intention behind establishing this group is to celebrate Jewish identity, endorse the remarkable work done by the club, and encourage like-minded fans to unite in support of Chelsea."

Lord John Mann, the United Kingdom's antisemitism envoy, commended Chelsea's decision and encouraged other football clubs to follow suit in fostering inclusivity and combating discrimination within the sport. Photo by Ank kumar, Wikimedia commons.