5 footballers whose fall from grace was fast and furious
- The reputation of these five footballers went for a downward spiral in a matter of months.
Football is a cruel game. While it possesses the ability to lift you from the depths of despair it is also a game in which reputations that took several seasons to build are destroyed in a matter of months. Sometimes, it is the saturation of the players as an individual, their inability to deal with the responsibility of being a superstar or something just not clicking whether it be the chemistry or the fit in the side.
Many footballers have gone from being a hero one season to being just another average footballer within a matter of months. However, there are some footballers who have gone from being the best in the business for several years to being an often ridiculed entity.
In this segment, we take a look at five superstars (current and former) who were brought back to earth in a matter of months.
#1 Andriy Shevchenko
The former Ukranian forward made a name for himself whilst at Dynamo Kyiv as he put several experienced defenders to the sword with his abilities in front of the goal. He was instrumental to his side winning the Ukranian Premier League for five consecutive seasons as he found the back of the net 94 times in 166 appearances as he along with Serhiy Rebrov helped his side to the Champions League semi-final in 1999.
Having won everything there was at Kyiv, it was time the forward found a greater challenge and that opportunity arrived when AC Milan came calling. Shevchenko, took to the rugged Serie A like a fish takes to the water and instantly enhanced his growing reputation as the best in the business. In the 260 games that he featured in for the Milan club, he scored 173 goals and was undoubtedly the best in the business.
Given his now established superstardom, Chelsea, who were keen to reach the top of both English as well as European football under the ownership of Roman Abramovich decided to pay a princely sum of £30.8 million to bring the best striker in the world to the club so as to strengthen their attacking resources. What followed would not make for sound reading if you happen to be a Chelsea fan.
The Ukranian failed to adapt to the faster and more physical Premier League and soon found himself on the bench more often than not despite the efforts of Abramovic to ensure he played more often. He scored a meagre 22 goals in 76 appearances for the Blues and was soon shipped to his former club AC Milan in a bid to help resurrect his career which was spiralling downwards at a rapid pace.
Post his move to Milan, it appeared that Shevchenko had failed to shake off the effects of a failed stint in West London and never truly got back to his best ever again, that despite being one of the best players in the Ukranian league in his second stint with his former club Dynamo Kyiv.