5 players whose careers went downhill at Chelsea
Chelsea began their ascent into the upper echelons of English football in the mid-nineties, quietly making ripples whilst the giants that were Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal fought it out for all the honours.
Since then, they have reached heady heights, capped off with an incredible Champions League run and victory in the 2011/12 season, and another European trophy in the form of a Europa league the next. They have also won the league 4 times in the past decade and boast of numerous domestic trophies, especially dominant in the FA Cup.
The foundation for this success was built upon players such as John Terry, Frank Lampard, Petr Cech, Ashley Cole and Didier Drogba, most of whom were brought in after the Roman Abramovich administration took over and made them into the world beaters that they are today.
Beyond these few, Chelsea have also boasted of many great players; the likes of Gianfranco Zola, Michael Ballack, Claude Makelele, and Nicolas Anelka have called Stamford Bridge’s hallowed pitch home at some point in time.
But all this success has come at a cost. Many have made the move to the London side with the hope of winning trophies and making a name, but instead found their careers stagnate and come to a standstill.
Here we take a look at 5 players who made the move to Stamford Bridge, but failed to make any significant impact and effectively ruined blossoming careers.
#1 Mateja Kezman
Once feared as one of the deadliest strikers in world football, the now 37-year-old Serbian is now a sports agent after retiring from the game in 2011.
Moving to London after a 4-year spell at Dutch club PSV Eindhoven, he was expected to bring goals to the Chelsea attack. Joined by a young Arjen Robben, also from PSV, the duo were touted to form a formidable partnership and lead Chelsea to their first league title in 50 years.
But as the stats suggest, his career proceeded to take a nosedive. In 4 seasons in the Netherlands, Kezman had scored an incredible 105 goals in 122 appearances and his previously mentioned partnership with Robben had earned him the nickname “Batman”.
(Video Courtesy: LP&CFC)
But after 41 appearances and just 7 goals in the 2004-05 season, Mourinho decided he did not have a place in his squad for those not pulling their weight and was sold to Atletico Madrid for £5.3m; coincidentally, the same price they bought him for.
Further spells in Paris Saint-Germain and Fenerbahce did not see him reach previous heights with him calling it quits after a spell in China.
He was one of the many who, after lighting it up the Dutch league, simply could not adjust to the intensity of the Premier League, with him hardly leaving any mark in the minds of Chelsea fans.