Monday, July 29, 2019

Chelsea All-Time team for British isles (excluding England)

Damien Duff 
Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Manchester UnitedLiverpoolArsenal,
ChelseaTottenhamManchester CityEverton,
Aston VillaNewcastle UnitedNottingham Forest
Leeds United, Leicester City.

Chelsea All-Time Team for Foreign Players
Chelsea All-Time Team for English Players

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for the club.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

Chelsea had their first major success in 1955, when they won the league championship. They then won various cup competitions between 1965 and 1996. The club's greatest period of success has come during the last two decades; winning 17 major trophies, and 21 in total, since 1997. Chelsea have won five national league titles, seven FA Cups, five League Cups and four FA Community Shields, one UEFA Champions League, two UEFA Cup Winners' Cups, one UEFA Europa League and one UEFA Super Cup. Chelsea are the only London club to win the UEFA Champions League,[6] and one of four clubs, and the only British club, to have won all three main UEFA club competitions.
Eddie McCreadie 

GK: Eddie Niedzwiecki (Wales)
Eddie Niedzwiecki started his playing career with Wrexham at the age of 14.  He won the Third Division title of 1978 with the side. In 1983, he signed for Chelsea by former Wrexham manager, John Neal, helping them to win the promotion in his first season.  He stayed with them until 1988.  He retired at the age of 28. He is of Polish descent, but born in Wales.  From 1985 to 1997, he was capped twice by Wales.
Eddie Niedzwiecki

GK: Bill Robertson (Scotland)
Born in 1928, Robertson played for Chelsea from 1946 to 1960.  He was a goalkeeper, playing in 26 matches in the 1954–55 season, when Chelsea won the First Division championship.   Charlie Thomson played a part of the season.  He left for Leyton Orient in 1960 before the emerge of Peter Bonetti. From 1960 to 1963, he played for Leyton Orient.  

GK: John Philips (Wales)
Phillips started out with Shrewsbury Town, before transferring to Aston Villa at the age of 18.  He joined Chelsea in 1970. He spent the majority of his career with Chelsea as the long-term understudy to Peter Bonetti.  Later, he had brief spells with Crewe Alexandra, Brighton & Hove Albion, Charlton Athletic, Crystal Palace and Sea Bee in Hong Kong. He also won 4 caps for Wales. 

RB: Steve Clarke (Scotland)
Clarke started his career with St Mirren.  He was transferred to Chelsea in 1987.  He stayed at Chelsea until 1998, making 421 appearances. He was a part of the Chelsea sides which won the 1997 FA Cup Final, 1998 Football League Cup Final and 1998 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup Final.  In 2005 he was voted into Chelsea's centenary XI, occupying the right-back berth.  Capped 6 times.

FB: George Smith (Scotland)
Born in Parkhead, Glasgow, George Smith started out with his local side Parkhead F.C., before enjoying a long career with Chelsea from 1921 to 1932.  He made his Chelsea's debut against Blackburn Rovers in 1921 at the age of 21. He played around 370 games for them. In 1932, he joined East Fife in Scotland.

CB: John Harris (Scotland)
Harris was the son of former Scottish international Neil Harris. In the beginning of his career. He played for Swindon Town, Swansea Town, Tottenham Hotspur, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Southampton during the war years. In 1945, he signed permanently for Chelsea.  He was a member of Chelsea's 1954–55 First Division-winning side.  He earned two wartime cap for Scotland.
John Harris 
CB: Jack Dempsey (Ireland)
Started with Fulham, he moved to Chelsea in 1969.  He won the FA Cup in 1970 and won the Cup Winners' Cup a year later in which.  he scored the opening goal.  He moved to the Philadelphia Fury of the NASL, playing alongside fellow ex-Chelsea star Peter Osgood.  In 1979, he was voted the NASL's defender of the year, beating out Franz Beckenbauer who finished second.

CB: Joe McLaughlin (Scotland)
McLaughlin started his playing career with Greenock Morton in 1977.  In 1983, he joined Chelsea, winning the Second Division championship in his first season. He would go on to play for Chelsea until 1989 winning another Second Division championship as well as the Full Members Cup. He was then transferred to Charlton Athletic for £650,000 which at that time made him Charlton's record transfer.  He also played with Watford and Falkirkl, Hibernian, Clydebank and then St Mirren.
 Joe McLaughlin 
LB: Eddie McCreadie (Scotland)
McCreadie joined Chelsea in 1962.  He scored a memorable winner in the League Cup final of 1965 in which he dribbled 80 yards up the pitch before slotting the ball past Leicester City goalkeeper Gordon Banks.  He also won the FA Cup with Chelsea in 1970. The side won the Cup Winners' Cup the following season, but McCreadie missed the final in Athens through injury. Earned 23 caps between 1965 and 1969.

LB: Joey Jones (Wales)
Jones played with Wrexham in 1971.  He joined Bob Paisley's Liverpool in July 1975.   He became the first Welshman to receive a European Cup winners medal when Liverpool won their first European Cup in 1977.  He returned to Wrexham before joining Chelsea in 1982.  He was a part of the side that won the Second Division champions in 1983–84.  From 1975 to 1982, he played 72 times for Wales.

LB: Tommy Law (Scotland)
Law signed for David Calderhead's Chelsea as a junior from local club Bridgeton Waverley and made his debut for the club in 1926. He was one of the less glamorous, members of a star-studded side which included his Scottish teammates, Hughie Gallacher, Alex Jackson, Willie Ferguson and Andy Wilson. Law won two caps for Scotland, both against England. He made his debut during Scotland's famous "Wembley Wizards" 5-1 win over England at Wembley in 1928. 

DM: Peter Nicholas (Wales)
Nicholas played for many clubs.  He spent five seasons with Crystal Palace, picking up the Second Division title in 1978-79.  With Arsenal, he was remembered for going in goal after Pat Jennings was injured.  He also played for Watford, Chelsea and Aberdeen.  From 1979 to 1992, he was capped 73 times for Wales.

CM:  Ian Britton (Scotland)
Britton started his career with Scottish amateur side Hillside Rangers. He joined Chelsea in the summer of 1971. He was a key part of manager Eddie McCreadie's young side, alongside the likes of Ray Wilkins, Steve Finnieston and Tommy Langley, which won promotion back to the top flight in 1976–77.  He also had a long career with Blackpool and Burnley.

AM: Craig Burley (Scotland)
Burley played in the Premier League for Chelsea and Derby County and in the Scottish Premier League for Celtic. He also played for Dundee and finished his career in the Football League with Preston North End and Walsall. He earned 46 caps for Scotland, scoring 3 goals.  He went to Euro 1996 and the World Cup Finals in 1998.

CM: Andy Townsend (Ireland)
Townsend played 70 times for Ireland.  He went to both World Cup Finals in 1990 and 1994.  He was a key player for both Finals, and was the captain of the team in 1994.  He played for many clubs in England, but most notably with Norwich, Chelsea and Aston Villa. He  won won the 1994 and 1996 League Cup with Aston Villa. He captained the 1996 side. On 22 March 2015, Townsend was inducted into the FAI Hall of Fame.

RW/LW: Charlie Cooke (Scotland)
Cooke began his professional career with Aberdeen in 1960 and moved to Dundee in December 1964, where he was voted player of the year. He signed for Chelsea in 1966 for a then club record of £72,000 as part of manager Tommy Docherty's restructuring of the Chelsea side.  He also won the FA Cup with Chelsea in 1970. The side won the Cup Winners' Cup the following season.  He earned 16 caps.
Charlie Cooke 
RW/LW: Bobby Campbell (Scotland)
A winger, Campbell's playing career consisted of spells with Falkirk, Chelsea and Reading. He also played for Queens Park Rangers as a "guest" during the Second World War. He won five caps for the Scotland national team, between 1947 and 1950. He scored his only Scotland goal against Switzerland in April 1950.

LW: Pat Nevin (Scotland)
In a 20-year career, Pat Nevin played for Clyde, Chelsea, Everton, Tranmere Rovers, Kilmarnock and Motherwell as a winger.  He played with Kerry Dixon in the 1980's with Chelsea. He was the Chelsea Player of the Year: 1983–84, 1986–87.  He joined Everton in 1989, but never recaptured the form at Chelsea.  Capped 28 times for Scotland between 1986 and 1996, but only managed to attend Euro 1992.
Pat Nevin
LW: Damien Duff (Ireland)
Duff won two Premiership titles with Chelsea with Chelsea in  2004–05 and 2005–06.  After four seasons at Stamford Bridge, he left for Newcastle United where he won the 2006 UEFA Intertoto Cup, and then moved on to Fulham, with whom he played in the 2010 UEFA Europa League Final. For Ireland, he was capped 100 times. He was remembered for his performance at World Cup 2002 and captained Ireland at Euro 2012.

FW: George Graham (Scotland)
For his club career, Graham played for Aston Villa, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Portsmouth and Crystal Palace. He was part of the side that won the Football League Championship and FA Cup "double" in 1971. That year, he earned his first cap for Scotland.  In total, he had 12 caps.

FW: Joe Bambrick  (Northern Ireland)
Bambrick began his career with Glentoran, before moving to Belfast rivals Linfield in 1927. He scored a total of 286 league goals in just 183 games. FGrom 1935 to 1938, he played for Chelsea.  Bambrick scored 12 goals in 11 games for Ireland (IFA), including six in one game against Wales. His goal tally ensures that he still ranks as the joint-fourth highest goalscorer for the Northern Ireland national side.

ST: Hughie Gallacher (Scotland)
Hughie Gallacher is one of the Scotland 's most prolific goalscorers with 24 goals from his 20 internationals, a remarkable strike rate of more than a goal a game. Gallacher was one of the Wembley Wizards who beat England 5–1 at Wembley Stadium in 1928. He played for many clubs, but he was probably remembered for playing for Newcastle United, Chelsea and Derby.  He scored over 450 goals while playing in the English league during the 1920's and 1930's.  
Hughie Gallacher 
ST: David Speedie (Scotland)
Speedie played for several clubs in England during the 1980s and 1990s, most notably Chelsea, Coventry City, Liverpool and Blackburn Rovers. In 1986, he became the first senior player since Geoff Hurst in the 1966 World Cup final to score a hat-trick at Wembley, as Chelsea defeated Manchester City 5–4 in the Full Members Cup final,

ST: Andrew Wilson (Scotland) 
Wilson's early career was interrupted by the First World War during which his left hand and forearm were shattered by enemy fire.  From 1923 to 1931, he played for Chelsea.  He also played for Middlesbrough, Heart of Midlothian, Dunfermline Athletic, Queens Park Rangers and Sporting Club Nîmois.  Wilson was capped 12 times by Scotland between 1920 and 1923; he averaged more than a goal per game with 13 goals. He scored another four in two unofficial wartime international.

ST: Mark Hughes (Wales)
Mark Hughes was best remembered for his spells with Manchester United.   He won two Premier League title medals, four FA Cups, three League Cups and two European Cup Winners' Cups. He was the first player to win the PFA Players' Player of the Year award twice, in 1989 and 1991. Hughes also played for  Barcelona, Chelsea, Southampton, Everton and Blackburn Rovers. He had 72 caps for Wales. 
Mark Hughes 
Honorable Mention
John Spencer (Scotland), Jock Cameron (Scotland), Peter Buchanan (Scotland), Dick Whitaker (Ireland), Joe Bambrick (Northern Ireland), Alec Jackson (Scotland), Alec Cheyne (Scotland), Gordon Durie (Scotland), Steve Finnieston (Scotland)
Willie Ferguson (Scotland), Tommy Walker (Scotland),  Johnny McNichol (Scotland).

Squad Explanation
-- Only five players are on my All-Time Chelsea team.  They are Pat Nevin, Charlie Cooke, Jack Dempsey, Steve Clarke and Eddie McCreadie. Apart from Eddie Niedzwiecki, Mark Hughes, John Harris, Hughie Gallacher, Tommy Law and Damien Duff, I am very uncertain about the other newcomers.
-- Only a handful of players are from the Preimership era. 
-- The team is unbalanced.  I only took 3 centerbacks and three leftbacks.  I cannot find any other eligible centerbacks of note who could fill the requirement. Vinnie Jones only spent a season with Chelsea. He has the most famous name of all centerbacks eligible for this team due to his acting career.
-- Almost all of Chelsea's keepers in the Premiership's era are foreigners.  Eddie Niedzwiecki was probably one of Chelsea's best keepers before the Premiership.  Bill Robertson started many games in the 1954–55 season, when Chelsea won the First Division championship.  John Phillips was mainly a backup keeper. John Jackson was a great keeper of his time, but he played behind Vic Woodley.  
-- I knew nothing much about Jock Cameron, but I have enough fullbacks.  So I only put him on honorable mention.
-- Tommy Cascarino (Ireland) and Terry Phelan only spent a short time here.
Between the two wars, Chelsea had a period with a lot of players from Scotland. Hughie Gallacher, Andrew Wilson and Tommy Law made this all-time team.
-- Tommy Law was a member of the "Wembley Wizards".  In 1930, David Calderhead, Hughie Gallacher, Alex Jackson and Alec Cheyne moved to Chelsea.  However, only Hughie Gallacher played well for them. Andrew Wilson and Willie Ferguson were a part of the team that helped Chelsea to grain promotion. 
-- John Dempsey scored the winning goal at the Cup Winners' Cup in 1971.  His place in Chelsea's history was sealed. Eddie McCreadie and Charlie Cooke also played on that team.
-- Peter Nicholas helped the club to grain promotion. He was the captain of the team.
-- Because of the lack of midfielders, I selected Craig Burley while bypassing many forwards and wingers.  Burley is a big question mark on this team, I admitted.
-- Pat Nevin and Damien Duff kept Willie Ferguson off the team.  They were left wingers.
-- Joe Bambrick was the last player selected.  He played for Irish Football Association, which was considered to be Northern Ireland.
-- Bobby Campbell contributed to Chelsea's first league title in the 1954-1955 season.  He played mainly as a right winger.
-- David Speedie was known for playing with Kerry Dixon and winger Pat Nevin 
-- Mark Hughes played a big role helping Chelsea to win the FA Cup and the Cup Winners' Cup in the 1990's.


Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Chelsea All-Time Team for English players

This blogger Artur Yanturin of Russia copied many of my blog teams.  This blog was one of them.  It was my Russia All-Time Team here.  His team was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.   His Spartak Moscow All-Time team entry of was published in October 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2017.  His entry of the Dutch-German rivalry between Real Madrid and Barcelona was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.  He also copied many many of my blog entries.

His Facebook and Instagram

Joe Cole, Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Manchester UnitedLiverpoolArsenal,
ChelseaTottenhamManchester CityEverton,
Aston VillaNewcastle UnitedNottingham Forest
Leeds United, Leicester City.

Chelsea All-Time Team for British Isles (Excluding England)
Chelsea All-Time Team for Foreign Players

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for Chelsea's English players. The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

Chelsea had their first major success in 1955, when they won the league championship. They then won various cup competitions between 1965 and 1996. The club's greatest period of success has come during the last two decades; winning 17 major trophies, and 21 in total, since 1997. Chelsea have won five national league titles, seven FA Cups, five League Cups and four FA Community Shields, one UEFA Champions League, two UEFA Cup Winners' Cups, one UEFA Europa League and one UEFA Super Cup. Chelsea are the only London club to win the UEFA Champions League,[6] and one of four clubs, and the only British club, to have won all three main UEFA club competitions.
Ron Harris and Peter Osgood

GK: Peter Bonetti 
Nicknamed as "the Cat", Bonetti was a legend at Chelsea. His finest moment came in the Final of the FA Cup in 1970 where his heroic play helped Chelsea to win the FA Cup. He was the FWA Player of the Year runner-up that year.  However, he only earned 7 caps for England.  his career was limited by playing with Gordon Banks at the same time. He was Banks' backup in the World Cup 1966.

GK: Vic Woodley
Woodley signed for Chelsea in 1931, making his debut the same year. Woodley was a member of the glamorous Chelsea side of the 1930s, playing alongside the likes of Hughie Gallacher, Alex Jackson and Alec Cheyne. Woodley won nineteen caps for England - all consecutive, a record at the time - and in an era when there was stiff competition from Harry Hibbs, George Tweedy and Frank Swift. 
Vic Woodley
GK: Kevin Hitchcock 
Hitchcock joined Nottingham Forest in 1983, but spent time on loan to Mansfield Tow,  helping the club to promotion from the Fourth Division in 1986. He joined Chelsea in 1988. He remained at Chelsea until 2001. Bad luck with injuries left him stuck behind numerous other goalkeepers in the pecking order which was one of the main reasons for him making so few appearances in all that time at the club.

RB: Peter Sillett 
Peter Sillet was the son of Charlie Sillett, a fullback who also played for Southampton.  He played with Southampton until 1953 when he joined Chelsea along with his brother John. He was the club's highest scoring defender until John Terry broke the record.  He won the League title in the 1954-1955 season.   He went to the World Cup Finals in 1958.

RB: David Webb
Webb played for Leyton Orient, Southampton, Chelsea, Queens Park Rangers, Leicester City, Derby County, A.F.C. Bournemouth and Torquay UnitedIt was with Chelsea that Webb really made his name in football, in particular for his role in Chelsea's win in the 1970 FA Cup final against Leeds United and  the European Cup Winners Cup. 

CB: Gary Cahill
Cahill joined Burnley on a season-long loan, where he performed well before returning to make his Aston Villa debut. He played with Sheffield United and Bolton Wanderers before Cahill signed for Chelsea in 2012.  He won the UEFA Champions League in his debut season. Cahill is an England international with over 60 caps and went the World Cups of 2014 and 2018, and the European Championship in 2012 and 2014.
Gary Cahill
CB: Colin Pates
Pates began his career with Chelsea, making his debut as an 18-year-old in 1979. He remained with Chelsea through the turbulent early 1980s and as club captain led the side to promotion in 1983–84. He was surprisingly sold to Charlton Athletic in 1988.  He later played with Arsenal and Brighton & Hove Albion.

CB: Ron Harris 
Known by the nickname "Chopper", he played for Chelsea between 1961 and 1980. Harris is widely regarded as one of the toughest defenders of his era.   He captained Chelsea as it won the FA Cup in 1970.  Then, he helped Chelsea to win the European Cup Winners' Cup a year later in 1971, Chelsea's first ever trophy in Europe.  He finally left Chelsea in 1980 to become a player-coach at Brentford.

CB: John Terry 
John Terry is a top centre-back of his generation and was the captain for Chelsea during most of his Chelsea's rise to the top of English football starting in the season 2004-2005.  He won 4 Premiership titles and the Champions League in 2012.  Terry was named PFA Players' Player of the Year in 2005. For England, he earned 78 caps for England.  However, his career was overshadowed by several controversies.
John Terry
LB: Ashley Cole 
Ashley Cole was considered one of the finest leftbacks of his generation.  He was voted the England Player of the Year in 2010. He played in 3 World Cup Finals.  He is also England's most-capped full-back in history.  He played with Arsenal, but moved to its rival Chelsea in 2006.  In 2014, he moved to AS Roma in Italy.  He won the Champions' League in 2012 with Chelsea.  

LB: Graeme Le Saux
Le Sauxmoved to England and debuted for Chelsea in 1989. He left joined Blackburn Rovers in 1993 and was part of their 1994–95 Premier League winning team. His return to Chelsea in 1997 in a £5 million transfer made him the most expensive defender in English football. He then played for Southampton. He played 36 times for England, starting all four England games at the 1998 World Cup Finals.

DM: Dennis Wise 
In a career spanning over 20 years, Wise played for Wimbledon, Leicester City, Millwall, Southampton, Coventry City and, most notably, Chelsea. He was known as the most successful captain at Chelsea before the emerge of John Terry.  He captained Chelsea as they won two FA Cups, two League Cups and an UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. Despite his successes at club level, he only earned 21 caps for England.
Denis Wise
DM/RB: John Hollins
His father, grandfather and three brothers were all professional footballers as well.  His brother Dave, played international football for Wales. From 1963 to 1975, he played for Chelsea. He later played for Arsenal. He made 714 First Division appearances, an English top division record for an outfield player and second only to goalkeeper Peter Shilton.  He was only capped once.

CM: Terry Venables 
From 1960 to 1966, Vernables played for Chelsea.  He then moved to Tottenham Hotspurs and later, Queens Park Rangers.  Venables held the distinction of being the only footballer to play for England at schoolboy, youth, amateur, Under-23, and for the full international team.  He only played twice for the senior side in 1964.  He was named a list of 33 players for the 1966 World Cup.

CM: Ray Wilkins 
Ray Wilkins enjoyed success at various clubs including Chelsea, Manchester United, Milan, Queens Park Rangers, and Rangers. He was remembered for winning the FA Cup in 1983 for Manchester United.  From 1976 to 1986, he was an important player for England, earning 84 caps.  He played in both 1982 and 1986 World Cup Finals.

CM: Frank Lampard 
Lampard was the all-time leading scorer for Chelsea.  he started his career with West Ham before joining Chelsea in 2001.  He won the Champions' League in 2012 and 3 Preimership with Chelsea.  He was runner-up at FIFA Player of the Year in 2015.  In 2014, he made a controversial move to Manchester City through a loan deal from NY City FC.  For England, he was a key player from 1999 and 2014.  The Lampard-Gerrard debate was a hot topic  throughout his career with England.
Frank Lampard
RW: Clive Walker
Walker began his career with Chelsea, playing in the same side as the likes of Ray Wilkins. He mainly played in the Second Division for most of his time there.  In 1979, Chelsea sent him on loan to the Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the North American Soccer League. He also played for  Chelsea, Sunderland, Fulham and Brighton & Hove Albion.

RW/LW: Joe Cole
Cole started his career with West Ham United.  He later spent seven seasons at Chelsea.  In 2010, he joined Liverpool, who a year later loaned him to Lille. After a season in France, he returned to Liverpool before re-joining West Ham in  2013. He also played for Aston Villa and Coventry City.  Cole played 56 times for England. He was selected for England at the 2002, 2006 and 2010 World Cups and Euro 2004.

LW: Frank Blunstone
Blunestone signed professional terms with hometown Crewe in early 1952.  He was signed by Chelsea manager Ted Drake for £7,500 a year later while still doing national service.  He helped Chelsea to win the 1954–55  First Division title, though he continued to juggle appearances for Chelsea with his national service.  He was capped 5 times.

FW/CB: Roy Bentley 
Started with Newcastle United, Roy Bentley joined Chelsea in 1948.  He played 367 games for Chelsea and captained the club to their first League Championship in the 1954-55 season. He also won 12 caps for the England national side. He played at the World Cup Finals in 1950, including the 1-0 loss against the United States.

ST/SS: Jimmy Greaves 
Jimmy Greaves was the top scorer in the English league for 6 seasons. He started his career with Chelsea, but alo played with AC Milan and spent 9 seasons with Tottenham Hotspurs.  With them, he won the FA Cup in 1962 and 1967, and the UEFA Cup in 1963.  He was a member of the World Cup winning team in 1966.  However, he lost his starting position after suffering an injury against France. Geoff Hurst replaced him.
Jimmy Greaves
LW/ST: Bobby Tambling 
He was Chelsea's all-time top scorer for 47 years, with 202 goals in all competitions until Frank Lampard surpassed this total on 11 May 2013. Tambling remains Chelsea's all-time top scorer in league competition with 164 goals. After enjoying a successful career in the Football League during the 1960s and early 1970s, Tambling moved to Ireland. He subsequently played for several Irish clubs.  Capped 3 times. 

ST: George Hilsdon 
In 1906, Hilsdon joined Chelsea on £4 a week wages. He scored  six goals in an FA Cup tie with Worksop Town, a club record which remains unequalled.  He was the first Chelsea player to score 100 goals, and ended his time there with 108 from 164 games. He is currently the club's 9th highest goal scorer of all time.  He also played for West Ham.

ST: Peter Osgood 
Osgood was a legend with Chelsea.  He helped them to win the Cup Winners' Cup in 1970.  Despite his successes with Chelsea, he only earned 4 caps.  Sir Ramsey is rumoured to dislike him for his playboy lifestyle.   He was a member of the 1970 World Cup squad, making two appearances against Czechoslovakia and Romania as a substitute. Near the end of his career, he played for Southampton, Norwich, Philadelphia Fury and a return to Chelsea.

ST Kerry Dixon 
After spells with Chesham United, Dunstable and Reading in the lower division, he signed with Chelsea in 1983, which was then in the 2nd division. He led them to first division in his first season.  For Chelsea, his 193 goals across all competitions made him their third-highest goalscorer of all time.  Dixon scored four goals in eight international appearances for England and represented the nation at the 1986 FIFA World Cup.
Kerry Dixon 

Honorable Mention
Ken Armstrong, William Foulke, Jack Harrow, Marvin Hinton, Micky Droy, John Bumstead, Jimmy Windridge, Peter Houseman, Alan Hudson, Dick Spence, Eric Parsons, George Mills, Ian Hutchisson, Ken Shellito, Gary Locke, Tony Dorigo, Stan Willemse, Tommy Lawton, Daniel Sturridge, Glen Johnson.

Squad Explaination
-- John Terry, Kerry Dixion, Peter Osgood, Ron Harris, Jimmy Greaves, Roy Bentley, Frank Lampard, Dennis Wise, Ashley Cole Peter Sillett and Peter Bonetti are on my All-Time Team for Chelsea.
-- Gary Cahill, Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard played on the team that won the Champions' League in 2012. 
-- Dennis Wise captained Chelsea in winning the 1998 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup.  He is the only player selected here.
-- The 1971 Cup Winners' Team had a much stronger English presense. Peter Bonetti, Ron Harris, John Hollins, David Webb and Peter Osgood played in the Final.
-- Alan Hudson was also on that 1971 team.  The emerge of Dennis Wise, Frank Lampard and Ray Wilkins took him out of this team.  He was probably the best player left off the squad.  
-- John Hollins could play in muilti positions.  I was choosing between him and Venables. 
-- Apart from Peter Bonetti, the other English keepers are not so well-known.  All the starters during the Premiership era were foreigners. I took Vic Woodley who held an early record for the English national team. A British newspaper also voted him as Chelsea's greatest English keeper ahead of Bonetti. He also kept Scotland's John Jackson from starting in Chelsea.
-- Goalkeeper Kevin Hitchcock had a lengthy career with Chelsea, but mainly spent on the bench due to injuries. Dave Beasant was well-known due to Wimbledon's 1988 shock FA Cup victory and playing for England.
-- William Foulke only played a short time at the club, but was more known as a crowd puller, but he was the club's first ever keeper so I gave him the third spot.
-- Ashley Cole and Graeme Le Saux are easy choice for leftbacks. Australian-born Tony Dorigo and Stan Willemse made honorable mention.
--David Webb edged out Glen Johnson, Ken Shellito and Gary Locke.  Injuries derailed Shellito's career.  He was playing in the lower division.  John Hollins also played rightback. 
-- Ken Armstrong made honorable mention.  He played for England before playing for New Zealand, which made him eligible for this team.
-- I marked down Dick Spence and Eric Parsons to be included in the team, but in the end, I had no space.
-- George Hilsdon is the first Chelsea player to score over 100 goals for the club.
-- Chelsea spent a lot of money on Tommy Lawton, but while his output was good, Chelsea did not do well with him and he only stayed a short time. He only made honorable mention.
-- Daniel Sturridge departed to Liverpool too early.

Joe Cole or Jimmy Greaves should also start.  The back four is the same as my All-Time Team for Chelsea.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Chelsea All-Time Team for foreign players

Gianfranco Zola and Gianluca Vialli winning the Cup Winners' Cup

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Manchester UnitedLiverpoolArsenal,
ChelseaTottenhamManchester CityEverton,
Aston VillaNewcastle UnitedNottingham Forest
Leeds United, Leicester City.

Chelsea All-Time Team for English Players
Chelsea All-Time Team for British Isles (excluding England)

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for Chelsea's froeign plaers.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

Chelsea had their first major success in 1955, when they won the league championship. They then won various cup competitions between 1965 and 1996. The club's greatest period of success has come during the last two decades; winning 17 major trophies, and 21 in total, since 1997. Chelsea have won five national league titles, seven FA Cups, five League Cups and four FA Community Shields, one UEFA Champions League, two UEFA Cup Winners' Cups, one UEFA Europa League and one UEFA Super Cup. Chelsea are the only London club to win the UEFA Champions League, and one of four clubs, and the only British club, to have won all three main UEFA club competitions.

Nils Middelboe (Denmark) who was born in Sweden was the first foreign player for Chelsea.  From 1908 to 1922, he played for Chelsea. It was the signing of Ruud Gullit that changed the history of the club.  Under manager Gianluca Vialli, Chelsea
 became the first English side fielded the entire squad of foreigners.

Juan Mata and Ed Hazard
GK: Petr Cech  (the Czech Republic)
Cech  is best remembered for being Chelsea's undisputred starting keeper from 2004 to 2014.  He won almost everything in club football.  He is considered among the greatest of his era.  He also played for Sparta Prague, Rennes and Arsenal. For Czech Republic, he is the most capped player in the history of the Czech team, with 124 caps, and represented the country at the 2006 World Cup, as well as the 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016 European Championships. 

GK: Ed de Goey (Netherlands)
De Goey played for both Sparta Rotterdam and Feyenoord. He later spent 6 seasons with Chelsea during the pre-Roman Abramovich days, winning the Cup Winners' cup in 1998.  He had 31 caps for the Dutch national team. He went to the 1994 World Cup Finals in the 1994, starting all of Oranje's games.  He was a member of the World Cup squad in 1998 and European Championship of 1996 and 2000.

GK: Carlo Cudicini (Italy)
Cudicini started in Italy, but struggled to start any game. In 1999, he joined Chelsea where he was voted Chelsea's Player of the Year for the 2001–02 season and remained first choice until Petr Čech was signed in 2004. Cudicini joined local rivals Tottenham Hotspur in 2009. In 2013, Cudicini signed for Los Angeles Galaxy of Major League Soccer, where he played the final season of his career.

RB: Branislav Ivanović (Serbia)
Ivanović began his career with FK Srem. He later played with OFK Beograd and Lokomotiv Moscow. In January 2008, he joined Chelsea.  He won nine major honours with Chelsea, including the Champions League and the Europa League. He is only five foreign players to appear in over 300 matches for the club. He has the most appearances for the Serbian national team in its history, having played 105 matches. He went to 2010 and 2018 World Cup.
Branislav Ivanović 
RB: Dan Petrescu (Romania)
Dan Petrescu is famous for having played for Steaua Bucharest in the 1989 European Cup Final, and winning the Cup Winners' Cup and Super Cup with  Chelsea. He also received 95 caps for Romania.  He went to the World Cup team in 1994 and 1998, and European Championship in 1996 and 2000. At the 1998 World Cup Finals, Petrescu raced past his Chelsea teammate Graeme Le Saux and scored the winning goal against England, which put them in the Group standing.

SW: Ruud Gullit (Netherlands)
Gullit was the iconic captain of Netherlands1988.  In 1987,  he moved from PSV Eindhoven to A.C. Milan for a world record transfer fee.  He was an important player for AC Milan during the 1980's where they won two straight European Cups. He was the European Footballer of the Year in 1987 and the World Soccer Player of the Year in 1987 and 1989.  He spent one season with Sampdoria winning the Italian Cup in 1994.
Ruud Gullit 
CB: Frank Leboeuf (France)
Frank Leboeuf was a part of the great French team that won the World Cup in 1998 and then European Championship in 2000.  He was mainly a backup behind Laurent Blanc, but played at the WC Final against Brazil. For his club career, his best stint was perhaps with Chelsea. With Chelsea, he won two FA Cups, one League Cup and one Cup Winners' Cup.

CB: David Luiz (Brazil)
David Luiz started his career with Vitoria and then, joined Benfica. In 2011, he joined Chelsea, where he became a star player.  Later, he played two seasons with PSG before rejoining Chelsea in 2016.  With Chelsea, he won the Champions League during the 2011–12 season.  From 2010, he played more than 50 times for Brazil.  He played in the 2014 World Cup Finals, where he captained the Seleção in their 7–1 defeat to Germany.

CB: Ricardo Carvalho (Portugal)
Ricardo Carvalho was the hero of Porto's Champions' League winning team in 2004.  He then played 6 seasons with Chelsea.  He also played for Real Madrid.  Jose Mourinho was his manager at the three clubs. He also played for Monaco and Shanghai SIPG. He was capped 76 times. He helped Portugal to reach the Final of Euro 2004 at home and the semifinal of the World Cup Finals in 2006. He was a part of Portugal's Euro 2016 winning team.
Ricardo Carvalho 
CB/DM:  Marcel Desailly (France)
Marcel Desailly was considered to be one of the greatest defensive players during the 1990's.  He played 116 times for France, winning the WC in 1998 and the European Championship in 2000.  He was the first player to win the European Cup in consecutive seasons with different clubs, when he won it with Marseille in 1993 and AC Milan the following year.

LB/RB: Cesar Azpilicueta (Spain)
A youth product of Osasuna, he spent three seasons in La Liga before switching to Marseille, winning four major honours with the French club. In the summer of 2012, he moved to Chelsea, winning the Europa League in his first season and a domestic double two years later.  From 2013, he played over 25 times.  he went to 2014 and 2018 World Cup Finals.

DM: N'Golo Kanté (France)
Kante played in France before. he joined Leicester City in 2015 winning the Premier League in his only season there. The following year, he joined Chelsea, winning the league again in his first season. He also won the PFA Players' Player of the Year and FWA Footballer of the Year and became the first outfield player to win back-to-back English league titles with different clubs since Eric Cantona in 1990's. He was a key player as France won the 2018 World Cup Finals.

DM: Claude Makelele (France)
Claude Makelele played  for Nantes, Marseille and Celta Vigo before making a big move to Real Madrid in 2000.  Over there, he quickly established as one of the best  defensive midfielder in the world.  He won every single club title available.  In 2003, he moved to Roman Abramovich's Chelsea.  he earned 71 caps for France.  He helped France to reach the Final of the 2006 World Cup in Germany.
Claude Makelele 
CM:  Michael Essien  (Ghana)
Michael Essien was one of the best central midfielders in the world during his prime. He first became a star while playing for Lyon.  Then, he moved to Chelsea.  Over there, he won a Champions' league, two Premier League titles and four FA Cups.  He also played with Real Madrid, AC Milan and Panathinaikos. Essien earned 58 caps in total.  He had represented his nation at three Africa Cup of Nations tournaments. Essien has also represented Ghana at the 2006 and 2014 World Cups.

CM: Roberto Di Matteo (Italy)
Born in Switzerland of Italian parents, Roberto Di Matteo started with Swiss clubs Schaffhausen, Zürich and Aarau before joining Lazio in 1993 and Chelsea in 1996. Di Matteo's goal in the 1997 was the fastest ever scored in the FA Cup final.  He also won the Cup Winners' Cup. He was capped 34 times for Italy, scoring two goals, and played in Euro 1996 and the 1998 World Cup.

AM/CM: Michael Ballack (Germany)
Born in East Germany, Michael Ballack was the best German player of his generation. first made his name with Bayer Leverkusen, helping them to the Final of the Champions' League in 2002. On the same summer, he helped Germany reaching the Final of Japan/Korea 2002.  He moved to Bayern Munich after the WC Finals.  he also played for Chelsea before his retirement.

CM/AM: Juan Mata (Spain)
Juan Mata was a youth academy player for Real Madrid, but he started with Valencia in 2007.  From 2011 to 2014, he played for Chelsea, where he was a major star for the team.  After a fallout with Jose Mourinho, he moved to Manchester United.  Ironically, they would reunite again at Old Trafford. For Spain, he was a part of the team that won the World Cup in 2010 and the European Championship two years later.

AM: Gianfranco Zola (Italy)
Gianfranco Zola played with Diego Maradona at Napoli as a young player. He played for Parma between 1993 and 1996, winning the 1995 UEFA Cup with Tomas Brolin, Fernando Couto, Faustino Asprilla and Stefano Fiore. He moved to Chelsea in 1996 and won the FWA Footballer of the Year.  His transfer to Chelsea started a wave of foreign players heading over to England. For Italy, he only played 35 times for Italy due to overcrowding of attack midfielders during his prime. 
Gianfranco Zola
AM/FW: Eden Hazard (Belgium)
At the time of writing, Eden Hazard has already earned 100 caps and led Belgium to the semi-final of the World Cup in 2018.  He played for Lille in France for 8 years. He signed with Chelsea in June 2012, where he won two Europa League in 2012 and 2019. He won both FWA and PFA Player of the Year for the 2014-2015 season in England.  In 2019, he joined Real Madrid.
Eden Hazard 
FW/RW: Willian (Brazil)
Willian started his career at Corinthians, before joining Shakhtar in August 2007.  He won the UEFA Cup in 2009. In 2013, he briefly signed for Anzhi Makhachkala before joining Chelsea for £30 million, winning the Premier League and League Cup in his second season in England. He made his debut for Brazil in 2011 and represented the country at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the 2015 Copa América and the Copa América Centenario.
RW/LW/FW: Arjen Robben (Netherlands)
Arjen Robben was an important player for Bayern Munich's dominance in Europe as they reached three Champions' League Finals in 4 years, winning the one in 2013.  He also played with Real Madrid, Chelsea and PSV Eindhoven at the club level.  For Netherlands, he had 96 caps between 2003 and 2017.  He helped Netherlands to reach the Final of the 2010 World Cup Finals and then, four years later the semi-final of the World Cup in Brazil.  

FW: Gianluca Vialli (Italy)
He first made his name with Sampdoria, helping them to win the Cup Winners' Cup in 1990.  In 1992, he made a world record breaking transfer to Juventus.  In 1996, he helped Juventus to win their first ever Champions' League.  He went to Euro 1988, where he was named in the team of tournament.  However, at Italia 1990, he lost his starting spot. After the WC Finals, he forced him out of the national team. 

ST: Eidur Gudjohnsen (Iceland)
Eidur Gudjohnsen is probably the best known footballer from Iceland.  He made his national debut as a 17 years old when he came in as a substitute for his father against Estonia in 1996.  The pair is the only father and son to have played in the same international match.  He was probably known for his career with Chelsea and Barcelona. He won a Champions League title with Barcelona. He played 88 times for Iceland.  He played for Iceland at Euro 2016 as a veteran player.

ST: Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (Netherlands)
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink was late bloomer where he played with smaller clubs until he moved to Portugal in 1995.  His best stint was probably in England with Leeds United and Chelsea.  He was the Premier League Golden Boot winner in both 1998-1999. 2000-2001.  He only played 23 times because of Netherlands loaded with forwards during the peak of his career.

ST: Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast) 
Didier Drogba was voted African Footballer of the Year twice; 2006 and 2009.  He is probably Ivory Coast's greatest ever player. The best part of his career was spent with Chelsea.  He won the Champions' League for 20011-12. He also finished the top scorer in the Premiership twice.  He also played in France, MLS and China. For his country, he led Ivory Coast to the World Cup Finals in 2006, 2010 and 2014. He was also their all-time leading scorer.
Didier Drogba

Honorable Mention
Nils Middelboe (Denmark), Florent Malouda (France), Tore Andre Flo (Norway), Nicolas Anelka (France), Diego Costa (Brazil/Spain), Fernando Torres (Spain), Albert Ferrer (Spain), Paulo Ferreira (Portugal), Arjen Robben (Netherlands), Gustavo Poyet (Uruguay), William Gallas (France), Thibaut Courtois (Belgium), Nemanja Matić (Serbia), Ramires (Brazil), Petar Borota (Yugoslavia), Ken Monkou (Netherlands), Frank Sinclair (Jamaica), Celestine Babayaro (Nigeria), John Obi Mikel (Nigeria), Cesc Fàbregas (Spain), Pedro (Spain), Salomon Kalou (Ivory Coast).

Squad Explanation
-- Petr Cech, Ed de Goey, Gianfranco Zola, Didier Drogba, Claude Makelele, Ricardo Carvalho and Marcel Desailly made my All-Time Team for Chelsea.
-- I took Carlo Cudicini (Italy) over Thibaut Courtois (Belgium) who is a much more famous player. Cudicini has a longer career with Chelsea.
-- The signing of Ruud Gullit in 1995 changed the history of Chelsea.  He opened the door for foreign players at the club. He was best known for playing as a libero for Chelsea, a position where he actually started in his career.
-- Vialli was the hero of the FA Cup in 1997.  It was Chelsea's first trophy over 25 years.  It was a big moment in the history of the club.
-- Nils Middelboe (Denmark) who was born in Sweden was the first foreign player for Chelsea.  From 1908 to 1922, he played for Chelsea.
-- Petar Borota was an early foreign player for Chelsea.  He played as a goalkeeper in the 1980's.
-- Derek Smethurst was the first South African to win a European championship when Chelsea won the 1970–71 European Cup Winners' Cup. However, his time with the club was short.
-- Frank Sinclair was actually from England.  He was not a foreign player, but he represented Jamaica, which made him cap-tied to Jamaica. He made honorable mention here.
-- On the other hand, Ken Armstrong was capped by England before he played for New Zealand.  I used the first cap-tied rule for dual national player in this type of blog tea,. He was considered "English".
-- I selected David Luiz over William Gallas for the last spot.
-- Paulo Ferreira and Albert Ferrer was left off because of Dan Petrescu and Branislav Ivanović. 
-- The leftback option is more difficult since Ashley Cole and Graeme Le Saux held the position during the influx of foreigners into the English league. Celestine Babayaro is the only regular foreign leftback.  Jose Mourinho used rightback Cesar Azpilicueta on the left side and he held onto his own. He kept Felipe Luis out of the lineup.  Marcos Alonso also did not hold the position. I took the rightback Azpilicueta as my only leftback because he is becoming a club legend.  It might be a mistake not to take Babayaro.
-- The team is overloaded with midfielders.  
--  N'Golo Kante won the FWA and PFA Players' Player of the Year: 2016–17.  Eden Hazard also won both award. Zola won the FWA award only.
-- I have too many strikers.  So I dropped Gustavo Poyet and Tore Andre Flo.  They were last two players dropped. Their stats with Chelsea were very similar. Instead, I went for a pair of wide players, Willian and Arjen Robben.
-- Arjen Robben was injury prone during his era with Chelsea.  However, he was among Chelsea's best players when they won the back-to-back Premiership.  It was Chelsea's first ever league title since the 1950's.  The team probably needs a left wing in Florent Malouda (France), but Robben could also play on the left.
-- Didier Deschamps, George Weah and Andriy Shevchenko came at the end of their careers.