Ashley has admitted he can not afford to give his manager the kind of funds he would need to take the club to the next level and put the business up for sale in October past year as a result.
The top-four was a remote possibility before kick-off but that was barely a secondary concern here, with a shot at redemption and a piece of silverware within reach next weekend.
The Italian has demanded a vast improvement after a 3-0 defeat at Newcastle on Sunday ended a disappointing Premier League season which has seen last year's title winners fail to qualify for the Champions League.
Jonjo Shelvey (9/10): At the end of the day, it was Jonjo Shelvey who proved to be the main difference between the two sides.
"Last season he helped me a lot during the season".
Antonio Conte had his trousers pulled down in front of the 52,000 supporters at St. James' Park and the millions watching around the world. This might lead to a massive squad overhaul in the upcoming summer, which might include the potential sacking of head coach Antonio Conte.
However, Chelsea appear to place the premium on Eden Hazard's future. His brace within five second half minutes wrapped up the game and the season with a flourish, taking his own goals tally into double figures.
But Ayoze Perez poked home twice in the second period as his side finished the season in a very respectable 10th position.
"On many occasions throughout the season they have been described as a Championship side, which I personally consider to be derogatory".
Chelsea will be playing Europa League football next season, and being brutally honest, we don't deserve anything more. "When the fans have travelled such a long way, to see a team performance like that, now somehow he's got to lift the team and get them ready for a cup final, and it isn't easy to just switch it on and off in football".
"Other people can judge our season and the problems [relating] to finish [ing] outside the top four". They needed Liverpool to lose at home to Brighton, who secured their safety a week ago. For sure, in the next week, the situation will be more clear for the end of the season.
We all know the rise of player power over the last decade can lead to managers' authority being regularly undermined, but for two title-winning managers to depart under dark clouds in under three years screams of an epidemic of epic proportions at Stamford Bridge.