Chelsea's 2004-05 title winning XI: Where are they now?
When you start following a football club, you are in it for life. Manchester United have lifted the Premier League trophy a record 13 times since its inception in 1992. Chelsea are second on the list of most Premier League titles with 5 in their kitty and are followed by Arsenal and Manchester City -- who have 3 each.
Chelsea's most recent trophy came in the 2016-17 season under Antonio Conte. While most of the players who played during this season are still there with the club, the players of the 2004-05 season have either retired or are plying their trade elsewhere. The Blues first won their first title in the 2004-05 season. As a fan, anyone would want to know where the title-winning XI of that season are now -- a season which was indeed a fairytale run for the fans of The Blues and is embedded deep into their memories.
Despite being one of the 6 teams to never have been relegated in the competition, Chelsea had failed to get their hands on any silverware for 12 seasons, until they finally broke the deadlock in the 2004-05 or the 13th edition of the Premier League.
Jose Mourinho, for whom it was his first season as Chelsea manager, proved to be the lucky charm for them as the Portuguese pulled all the strings together to perfection, enabling them to win their first ever Premier League title. Chelsea went on to finish the season with 29 wins, 8 draws, and a solitary loss out of their 38 matches - amassing 95 points in the process (a record then). Such was their domination in the league that they finished 12 points clear of 2nd placed Arsenal.
Let's have a look at the title-winning XI of that season and where they are now:
#1 Petr Cech
Petr Cech had made his competitive debut for Chelsea the 2004/05 season in their very first game of the season against Manchester United.
As a result of his terrific performances, Cech was named in the PFA Team of the year. Chelsea's custodian also won the Premier League Golden Glove for keeping 24 clean sheets --10 of which were consecutive. It was indeed an incredible feat and Cech is widely regarded as one of Chelsea's best guardians between the sticks till date. Cech proved to be worth every penny of the £7.1 million the club had spent to acquire him from French club Rennes back then.
With 124 appearances, the 36-year-old is the most capped player for his national team, Czech Republic. He has the club record of keeping the most clean sheets - 220 in number. The Czech international also won a number of titles during his illustrious 11 years at Chelsea - one UEFA Champions League, one UEFA Europa League, three League Cups, four FA Cups, and four Premier League titles. The 6ft 5 in goalkeeper made 35 appearances for The Blues in their title-winning 2004-05 season.
The veteran goalkeeper would move to Arsenal in the 2015-16 season after Thibaut Courtois became the first choice keeper in Chelsea and has been with The Gunners since then.