Chelsea’s Title Winners 2004-05 Revisited


This year has been extremely significant for Chelsea Football Club as they secured their fourth English Premier League title last weekend.

2015 also marks a decade since the ‘Blues’ won their first Premier League championship win.

So I thought it would interesting to see a Chelsea team from the 2004-05 and see where they are now.

Petr Cech

The Cech Republic goalkeeper arrived in West London during the summer of 2004.

He came in and ousted Carlo Cudicini as the clubs number one and was integral in helping the club secure their first Premier League title. A commanding presence in between the sticks and also managed to produce top class performances.

Now a veteran in the squad, Cech is only four cleansheets away from equalling David James Premier League record. But after ten seasons as number one, the thirty-two year old now has had to spend most of this season on the bench as the younger Thibaut Courtois has excelled.

So Petr Cech may exit Stamford Bridge this summer but teams will be queueing up for his services. A Chelsea legend who has won four English league titles, four FA Cups, three League Cups, a Europa League and a Champions League title.

Paulo Ferreira

The Portuguese right-back is now thirty-six and retired in 2013 after spending nine seasons with the Blues.

Came over in 2004, following Jose from Porto in a £13.2m deal. Came with a big reputation after winning so many trophies in Portugal and being a key member in their national team.

Always gave his all and would help out in the centre if needed, but alas didn’t quite reach the heights that were expected of him. Would eventually lose his starting place to current incumbent Branislav Ivanovic but Paulo was always a dependable squad member and deserved his eleven medals that he won at Chelsea.

Still works for the club helping out with stadium tours and representing club sponsors at special events. Also taking his coaching badges at the club’s academy.

William Gallas

The French defender was eccentric and erratic throughout his career. Extremely versatile (he could play anywhere at the back) and pacey too. Was signed by Claudio Ranieri in 2001 for a fee of £6.2m from Marseille.

Would go on to make 159 appearances for the Blues scoring thirteen goals. Was a great partner in the central of defence with John Terry during his early days but was used predominantly on the left by Jose Mourinho during the 2004-05 season. Would leave Chelsea after wanting more money and to play more in the centre. Chelsea even claimed Gallas had threatened to deliberately score own goals if he was not allowed to leave Stamford Bridge.

Would eventually leave Chelsea and join London rivals Arsenal (part of the Ashley Cole deal) and would then leave the Gunners for another London side: Tottenham.

Finished his career in Australia, playing for Perth Glory in the 2013-14 season.

John Terry

Was the inspirational captain when Chelsea secured that first Premier League title and he’s still that captain now. That means he’ll be the man that steps forward and lifts the trophy when it gets handed over at the end of the season.

A product of Chelsea’s youth system, he made his debut during the 1998-99 season and has been a terrific servant for the club. Now thirty-four but still one of the best defenders in England. Has adapted his game and is now smarter in the challenge. Won  fourteen major titles during his time at Stamford Bridge, although he famously/infamously missed the Champions League final win in 2012.

Might be hated by many fans throughout football but loved by the Chelsea faithful. No one can argue that he’s an inspirational leader and a tremendous centre-back.

Recently signed a new contract that means he will remain at the club next season.

Ricardo Carvalho

Carvalho was another that would follow Mourinho and leave Porto for Chelsea in 2004.

In my opinion he would become John Terry’s best central defensive partner. Ricardo is a fine defender, who possessed great pace and technique while at the Bridge. Also had a fine footballing brain and had a fine leap in the air. Stayed at Chelsea for six seasons, making over two hundred appearances for the club.

Would once again work with Jose at Real Madrid. At thirty-six he is still playing Champions League football with French side AS Monaco. Has played in twenty-two Ligue 1 games so far this term.

His contract with Les Rouges et Blancs runs out at the end of this campaign.

Claude Makelele

Was one of the biggest signings during owner Roman Abramovich’s first summer at the London club, coming from Real Madrid in a £16m deal. Was also probably the best.

Makelele was the anchor in midfield that allowed Real’s Galacticos to shine and win the Champions League in 2002. But the hardworking midfielder felt under appreciated at the Bernabeu. That wouldn’t happen at Stamford Bridge, where he was adored by his managers, teammates and the fans. Not prolific in-front of goal but did score a famous penalty in the 2004-05 season against Charlton on the day Chelsea were presented with their first Premier League title.

Played his role to tremendous effect, so much so that the role was then named after him!

Would leave the Premier League in 2008 and join PSG, where he played on for three more years. Remained with Parisian club as a coach under former Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti. Got his chance to be a boss at Bastia but failed to make an impact with the club and left last November after just a few months in charge.

Joe Cole

Joe Cole was meant to be the best English player of his generation. Joined the Blues in 2003 after his boyhood club West Ham were relegated.

Never reached that potential that many thought he would but did well enough to win three league titles with Chelsea. Had a bit of a testing relationship with Jose, who often wanted Cole to produce more and be more disciplined in defensive positions. In the 2005 title winning season the tricky wide-man made twenty-eight league outings, scoring eight goals.

Left for Liverpool on a free transfer in 2010, earning a reported £90k a week. Didn’t have a great debut season at Anfield and was then loaned out to Lille. Then went back to West Ham in 2013 but again couldn’t rediscover his form there.

Now thirty-three and struggling to get a game with a poor Aston Villa side.

Frank Lampard

Actually joined Chelsea before the Roman Abramovich era began.

The classy midfielder would make a superb impact at the Bridge, often getting on the scoresheet and along with Terry became the club’s standard bearers. Spent thirteen seasons with the Blues, making over six hundred appearances and winning eleven trophies. Would also amazingly become the clubs all-time leading goalscorer with two hundred and eleven goals!

Wasn’t offered a new deal last summer and announced he was joining new MLS side New York City. Was immediately loaned to NYC FC’s parent club Man City and has been with them all season. He would score an equaliser for his new employers against Chelsea in September but refused to celebrate, was applauded by both sets of fans as he came on as a substitute.

Will finally join New York City in the summer.

Eidur Gudjohnsen

The Icelandic attacker joined from Bolton Wanderers in the millennium year.

A smart forward, who would often reach double figures, in terms of goals, each year. Would do a lot of the hard work and see the number one forward get more of the glory. Played more during Jose’s debut season than any other season he spent at Chelsea, scoring twelve goals that year.

Left two seasons later, joining Barcelona in 2006. His time in Spain didn’t see the same amount of goals,  but he was an used sub in the 2009 Champions League final win over Man Utd. Would then leave for Monaco and also spent time at Tottenham, Stoke, Fulham, AEK Athens, Cercle and Club Brugge.

The thirty-six year old rejoined Bolton this season and has scored five goals in twenty Championship matches.

Didier Drogba

Was another new-boy in 2004, after he completed a £24m move from Marseille.

The powerful striker was a bit inconsistent during his first season with the Blues but didn’t really look back after that, completing another seven seasons in a Chelsea jersey. He would score 157 goals during that time, some were extremely valuable. Would score the winning penalty kick against Bayern Munich as Chelsea won their first Champions League trophy.

After that win over Munich, Didier Drogba decided to leave for a new adventure and turned up in China. Would play in eleven matches for Shanghai Shenhua, scoring eight times. The Ivorian legend would then sign up with Galatasaray and he’d help them secure the Turkish Super Lig title in 2013.

Rejoined Chelsea last summer and could remain at the club as a coach if he decides to hang up his boots after this season.

Damien Duff

The Irish winger was a top performer in the English Premier League at Blackburn Rovers prior to his £17m Chelsea move in 2003.

Had three decent seasons at Stamford Bridge with his best season coming in the title winning season of 2004-05, where he played thirty times and scored six league goals. Was sold on to Newcastle Utd in 2006 as Chelsea continued to evolve.

Was never the same attacking threat after he left the Blues. Suffered relegations at both Newcastle and Fulham (although he did enjoy some success at Craven Cottage).

Spent this past year in Australia playing for A-League side Melbourne City. Recently announced that he would leave OZ to return to Ireland with the view of ending his career in the League of Ireland.

Manager: Jose Mourinho

The Portuguese boss arrived after winning the Champions League with FC Porto. He declared himself the ‘Special One’ and the Chelsea support soon agreed.

He brought the London club their first top league triumph in fifty years and would repeat the feat a year later. In 2007 his relationship with owner Roman Abramovich had deteriorated to a state that the two could no longer work together.

Mourinho would return to management in the summer of 2008, joining Inter Milan. He would win two Serie A titles and a Champions League win during his two years in Italy. Then he moved to Spain and took up the managers job at Real. That would become a turbulent era for Jose but he did manage to stop Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona from winning four La Liga titles in a row.

After he left the Bernabeu in the summer of 2013, Jose quickly announced that he was returning to Stamford Bridge and was now the ‘Happy One’. He nearly secured the league title last season but completed rebuilding his squad last preseason and has run away with the league this term and now has his third Premier League title win!

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