CHELSEA stars were left in a state of shock and confusion after they were told the club was part of the Dirty Dozen splitting football in two.
Blues chairman Bruce Buck called a meeting of the players in an attempt to explain why they were signing up to the European Super League.
But SunSport understands the news did not go down well with the squad.
Individuals are concerned about the damage it threatens to do to the game.
Those fears only grew when it became clear Uefa were threatening to throw them out of the Champions League.
Chelsea face Real Madrid in the semi-finals, with the first leg in Spain next Tuesday.
To make matters worse, players potentially face being banned from international football in the future.
Stars were left ‘gutted’ by the announcement, which came as they were putting the finishing touches on their preparations for tonight’s clash with Brighton – before which a planned protest of Chelsea supporters is expected outside Stamford Bridge.
The Blues know victory will see them climb back into the top four above West Ham who they face on Saturday.
FREE BETS: GET OVER £2,000 IN SIGN UP OFFERS HERE
MORE ON SUPER LEAGUE OUTRAGE
Earlier today, it was revealed cracks were appearing among the Super League breakaway rebels.
Seeds of doubt are creeping in with two of the six top-flight English rebels ‘close to losing their nerve’.
It is thought their support of the proposed ESL is ‘wavering’ – and for one of them, that may mean a U-turn in their plans.
Politico editor Alex Wickham said one of the group may try and get out of the deal, accusing breakaway leaders Liverpool and United of ‘lying to them and f***ing up’.
But this meeting was canned soon after full-time of last night’s 1-1 draw at Leeds.
Chief executive Billy Hogan sent an email to staff on Monday to begin to explain the club’s actions – which have drawn particular criticism from Sky Sports pair Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville.
The remaining ‘angry and dismayed’ 14 Premier League clubs are meeting today to discuss how to deal with the other six – and could even order them to quit the division.
⚽ Read our Football live blog for the very latest news from around the grounds