Chelsea investigation reveals threats against club from Zouma’s agent

Julian Miller
By: Julian Miller
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Chelsea investigation reveals threats against club from Zouma’s agent

Saif Rubie allegedly threatened former Chelsea executive and Roman Abramovich ally Marina Granovskaia in May 2022 over a supposed withheld transfer fee. 

News Insights

  • Kurt Zouma’s former agent, Saif Rubie, allegedly threatened former Chelsea executive Marina Granovskaia.
  • Rubie referenced another agent who was assaulted.
  • Rubie is on trial in London over the alleged threats.
  • Rubie has denied all allegations.

West Ham centre back Kurt Zouma’s former agent Saif Rubie is on trial in London this week for allegedly threatening former Chelsea executive Marina Granovskaia regarding the transfer of Zouma from Chelsea to West Ham.  
According to the criminal proceedings, Rubie sent a threatening email to the former Roman Abramovich ally in May 2022, before the Russian oligarch was forced to sell the club.  
Rubie has denied all allegations, saying all he is guilty of is sending an angry email. 

Zouma transfer fee dispute explained

In 2021, Chelsea sold Kurt Zouma to their London rivals West Ham for £29 million (approx. $55.6 million AUD). This was a relatively straightforward deal as the Blues looked to move on from a backup centre back. According to agent Saif Rubie, though, he was supposed to get a cut.  
Rubie alleges that Chelsea, specifically former Director of Football Marina Granovskaia, robbed him of his commission on the Kurt Zouma transfer.  
According to Rubie, he was owed 10% of Zouma’s transfer fee. Granovskaia and Chelsea disagreed and did not pay Rubie a single cent. This is the incident which sparked the whole current affair. 

Rubie allegedly sends threatening email 

After nearly a year of not receiving what he believed he was due, Rubie sent Granovskaia an email demanding compensation for Kurt Zouma’s transfer.  
The email read, in part, “I'm sure you've heard the story about your other friend Kia when he owed me money for a year and how he ended up paying it. Wouldn't want you to be in the same situation just because you have a personal issue with me.” 
The Kia referenced in that email is another soccer agent, Kia Joorabchian, who was reportedly threatened and had his watch stolen as retaliation for nor paying Rubie.  
Granovskaia says the email made her “feel threatened,” so she brought charges against Rubie under the UK’s Malicious Communications Act. 

Agent denies allegations

Rubie has denied all allegations made against him by Granovskaia and others.  
All I'm guilty of is sending an angry email,” he said.  
When asked whether he intended to threaten Granovskaia by his lawyer at trial, Rubie said, “Legally, of course, one million percent. But anything else? Never.” 
He went on to reference Granovskaia’s relationship to Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, saying “I'm sending an email to a woman that's the right hand of Roman Abramovich, one of the biggest Russian businessmen in the world. 
“I'm only Saif Rubie ... I don't think I would be stupid enough to be threatening anybody, let alone somebody with the might of Roman Abramovich (behind them). 
“That would just be me on a suicide mission.” 
This lawsuit is the latest update in a series of legal actions involving Chelsea in the fallout of the Roman Abramovich era at the club.  

On the pitch, things have not been much better for the Blues. Chelsea are on track to miss out on the Champions League for the second straight season.  

However, a late season push has them within shouting distance of qualifying for the Europa League or Europa Conference League. Many  betting sites now give Chelsea solid odds of finishing inside the top six.  

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