An overview of Chelsea's past few January signings
It's been a few days into the winter transfer window and Chelsea have already made headlines by splashing £58 million on American youngster Christian Pulisic. The dearth of valuable players available for transfer coupled with the reluctance of clubs to let go of their performing stars mid-season has rarely barred Abramovich from conducting business in January.
Due to the unavailability of pre-season and lack of time to train with the team, new signings often encounter difficulties in settling into the squad. Moreover, there is an added pressure of immediate output as the signings are generally made to circumvent certain barriers that might be falling in the club's pursuit of their goal.
Since Abramovich's takeover in 2003, Chelsea have regularly splashed money in January to make sure their path to glory remains on trajectory. Although, spending heavily and denying academy players a chance by bringing dignified players mid-season for quick results, has not always worked.
Here's a detailed look at some of the key transfers made by Chelsea in the last few winter transfer windows.
#4 Gary Cahill - Success
There is hardly another footballer in England who divides opinion as much as Gary Cahill. Signed from Bolton Wanderers in January 2012 for around £7 million, Cahill was brought in as a fourth choice center-back behind Branislav Ivanovic, David Luiz, and club captain John Terry. However, frequent injuries and suspensions to other defenders helped Cahill squeeze his way into the first team.
The then 26-year-old made 10 premier league appearances and played in both the legs of the semi-final against Barcelona. While his former side faced relegation at the end of the season, Cahill won the FA Cup and the Champions League final where he started alongside Luiz in the absence of Terry and Ivanovic.
Following his impressive first half-season with the blues, Cahill became a mainstay at Chelsea and guarded the defensive line for the next six years before becoming a squad player. During his time at the West London club, the English defender has also endured two miserable campaigns in 2015-16 and 2017-18 which have brought him criticism from pundits as well as fans.
Nevertheless, he has guarded the Chelsea back line supremely well on most occasions helping them win a Champions League, Europa League, two FA Cups, a League Cup, two Premier Leagues, and has also been included in the PFA team of the year three times.