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5 most underrated Chelsea players of the 21st century

Juan Mata enjoyed a short, but productive spell at Chelsea
Juan Mata enjoyed a short, but productive spell at Chelsea.
Abhinav Anand
ANALYST
Modified 22 Apr 2021

Chelsea, one of the biggest clubs in the world, have not been short of trophies since Roman Abramovich's takeover.

While the club continues to be big spenders in the market, their famed academy has also contributed to the first team in recent seasons. While the likes of Frank Lampard, John Terry, Petr Cech and Didier Drogba are rightly regarded as legends of the club, various other footballers have played a role in their success.

Due to Chelsea's superclub status, certain players tend to go under the radar. However, their contributions cannot be ignored as they helped Chelsea become the club they are today. On that note, we look at the:

Top 5 most underrated footballers for Chelsea in the 21st century


#5 Florent Malouda

Florent Malouda celebrates a goal for Chelsea.
Florent Malouda celebrates a goal for Chelsea.

A goal-scoring winger who enjoyed a trophy-laden spell at Chelsea, Florent Malouda enjoyed an illustrious career at the top level.

Some stunning performances for Ligue 1 side Lyon saw Chelsea pay Β£17 million to sign him in 2007. The France international was a consistent presence in Chelsea's first XI and delivered some important moments during his time at the club. Malouda's contributions may have gone under the radar due to the presence of superstars like Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba, but he was a crucial cog in the team's success.

The winger made 229 appearances in all competitions for Chelsea, scoring 45 goals and providing 44 assists. He won the Premier League and the Champions League with Chelsea, departing in 2013. After stints with clubs like Trabzonspor, Metz and Delhi Dynamos, the 40-year-old retired in 2018.


#4 Juan Mata

Juan Mata was one of the best attacking midfielders in the league during his time at Chelsea.
Juan Mata was one of the best attacking midfielders in the league during his time at Chelsea.

A highly creative attacking midfielder with excellent technical skills and passing ability, Juan Mata is often called "The Magician" by fans.

The Spanish international joined Chelsea from Valencia in 2011 for a fee of Β£24 million. Mata immediately became a key member, with his playmaking ability appreciated by Chelsea players and fans alike. He won Chelsea's Player of the Year award twice and was regarded as one of the best attacking midfielders in the Premier League during his time with the Blues.

Mata made 135 appearances in all competitions for Chelsea, scoring 32 goals and providing 58 assists. The arrival of Jose Mourinho reduced his game-time at the club, and he subsequently moved to Manchester United in January 2014 for a then club-record fee of Β£40 million. The 32-year-old is currently a squad player for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side.


Also Read: 10 most valuable football clubs in the world (2021)

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Published 22 Apr 2021
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