After we counted down the five worst transfers of the Roman Abramovich era, now we determine the five best transfers of the last 15 years.
5. Ashley Cole
When Cole arrived in 2006, many Chelsea fans were a little doubtful. Cole left Arsenal despised by their fans and arrived at Chelsea whose fans were suspicious of a man who would make the rare move between hated rivals. Was he just doing it for the money?
Chelsea also had Wayne Bridge in place at left back who many Blues fans were behind. However, Cole would quickly win the doubters over and go on to become Chelsea’s best ever left back. The cost of £5 million turned out to be the ultimate bargain.
4. Eden Hazard
Hazard is the most talented player in the club’s history, rivaled only by Gianfranco Zola. He may not be the best player in the club’s history as his genius has been intermittent. He is worth the price of admission alone though such is his skill. In today’s market where good attacking players cost over £100, Hazard’s price of £32 million was great value for money.
3. Petr Cech
Cech should not be forgotten even though he would have spent almost as much time at Arsenal than he did at Chelsea by the time he retires.
He started making a few mistakes post-2012. However, right up to the Champions League victory in 2012, Cech was unbelievably good. He so rarely made a mistake and some of his saves will go down in history. At only £7 million, he was another bargain.
2. Didier Drogba
Chelsea signed Drogba from Marseille for £24 million in 2004. This was expensive at the time and Drogba took a while to live up to the price.
The 2006/07 season was the launching pad as he became the best big game striker in the business. He showed this most memorably in 2012 as Chelsea won the Champions League.
Unbelievably, some thought Lampard’s £11 million signing in 2001 was strange and definitely too expensive. The midfielder would go on to improve beyond measure to become Chelsea’a highest ever goalscorer.
He provided assists, tracked runners and did all any midfielder could hope to achieve.