Prior to the arrival of Roman Abramovich, Chelsea had actually become a club that was able to trouble the Premier League champions. When the Russian billionaire took full control in 2003, Chelsea was transformed into a serious contender in the title race.
Unmitigated, in his first season, Abramovich immediately squandered large funds to bring in a number of quality players. Here’s the latest news on five of Chelsea’s most expensive signings in Roman Abramovich’s first season.
Hernan Crespo : Hernan Crespo is Chelsea’s most expensive signing in Abramovich’s first season. The Argentine striker was transported from Inter at a cost of IDR 452 billion. Unfortunately, Crespo failed to show sharpness at Chelsea.
During his two seasons as a public idol at Stamford Bridge, he was only able to score 25 goals from 73 matches in all competitions. Even so, he took part when Chelsea managed to defend the Premier League title in 2005/06.
Crespo was eventually released on a free to Inter in 2008 after spending two seasons on loan. In 2012, he retired at the club that made his name, Parma.
Crespo then started his career as a manager in 2015 with Modena. Now, he has not coached any team after being sacked from the chair of Sao Paulo coach on October 13, 2021.
Damien Duff : Damien Duff’s stunning appearance during costumed Blackburn Rovers made Chelsea smitten. Under the power of Abramovich, the agile player from Ireland was redeemed with a dowry of IDR 426 billion on July 1, 2003.
During three seasons with Chelsea, he was able to carve 19 goals and 28 assists from 125 matches in all competitions. Not only that, Duff also successfully presented 2 Premier League titles (2004/05 and 2005/06), 1 League Cup (2004/05), and 1 Community Shield (2006).
After deciding to retire at Shamrock Rovers in 2016, Duff then worked as a youth team coach at the club. Had been an assistant coach at Celtic and the Irish national team, the 42-year-old man was finally appointed as coach of Shelbourne FC since 3 November 2021. Duff will embark on an adventure with his team in the Irish Premier League next year.
Juan Sebastian Veron : Juan Sebastian Veron’s inconsistency with Manchester United did not dampen Chelsea’s intention to recruit him for a ransom of IDR 379 billion. They believe the Argentine playmaker is capable of rekindling his shine at Stamford Bridge.
Unfortunately, this belief contradicted the glasses of Claudio Ranieri, the Chelsea manager at the time. Veron was indeed unable to adapt to the atmosphere of the Premier League.
During his Chelsea costume, he was only able to score 1 goal and 2 assists from 14 matches in all competitions. The following two seasons, Veron also underwent a loan period at Inter until finally being released to Estudiantes in 2006 for a ransom of only IDR 38 billion.
After taking a break from football in 2014, Veron has served as president of the Estudiantes club until now. Uniquely, he had doubled as a player for the club in 2017 in order to attract supporters to come to their new stadium.
Claude Makelele : Chelsea managed to woo Claude Makelele to land at Stamford Bridge after taking advantage of the turmoil of his contract renewal at Real Madrid. The French anchor midfielder was redeemed at a cost of IDR 348 billion at the end of the 2003/04 summer transfer market.
In the first season, Makelele immediately became Claudio Ranieri’s mainstay in suppressing the creativity of the opposing team’s midfield. When the control of the team shifted to Jose Mourinho, he remained the first choice. During his five seasons with Chelsea, Makelele appeared in 217 matches and successfully presented 2 Premier League titles, 2 League Cups, 1 FA Cup, and 1 Community Shield.
After deciding to retire at PSG in 2011, he became part of Nasser Al-Khelaifi’s new PSG era. From 2011 to 2014 he was assistant coach to Carlo Ancelotti and Laurent Blanc while in charge of PSG. In 2019, the 48-year-old returned to Stamford Bridge and until now has served as a technical mentor to young players in the academy or Chelsea players who are on loan at other clubs.