Footballing accountant to get golden parachute

The chartered accountant signed a four-year 11 month service agreement with Chelsea in January for which he is being paid £500,000 a year.

If the club’s new owner Roman Abramovich decides to terminate the contract before it is up in 2007, Birch will still be entitled to the pay. He is also entitled to a £1,000 monthly car allowance, petrol costs, and private healthcare for him and his family.

And if Birch is dismissed for ‘failing to perform his duties to a standard reasonably satisfactory to the board of Chelsea Village,’ he would received 18 months of pay.

But critics say Birch’s pay is already unusually high for a small, loss-making company and that the payoff is similar to those paid to long-serving executives of quoted companies.

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