Wilkins, linked with Chelsea for 37 years before the club announced last week he would be leaving with immediate effect, is understood to have sailed close to the wind in a recent management meeting with a swipe at the Russian billionaire’s non-football background.
Querying a matter raised at the meeting, Wilkins is understood to have turned to Abramovich and chief executive Ron Gourlay and said: "Well, if you’d ever played the game you’d know otherwise..."
Wilkins, known for his affable banter, may not have intended any offence with the comment; however the comment was quickly followed by Chelsea sacking him from his £350,000 per year job.
Chelsea say Wilkins’ post was declared surplus to requirements following a consultation.
If you can keep your head when all about you Are losing theirs and blaming it on you, If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you But make allowance for their doubting too, If you can wait and not be tired by waiting, Or being lied about, don't deal in lies, Or being hated, don't give way to hating, And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise: If you can dream--and not make dreams your master, If you can think--and not make thoughts your aim; If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster And treat those two impostors just the same; If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools, Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken, And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools: If you can make one heap of all your winnings And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss, And lose, and start again at your beginnings And never breath a word about your loss; If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew To serve your turn long after they are gone, And so hold on when there is nothing in you Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!" If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue, Or walk with kings--nor lose the common touch, If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you; If all men count with you, but none too much, If you can fill the unforgiving minute With sixty seconds' worth of distance run, Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it, And--which is more--you'll be a Man, my son!