Drogba, Hazard, Carvalho – The ultimate 25-man Chelsea squad from the past 20 years

Chelsea have enjoyed something of a successful time under the ownership of Roman Abramovich, but quite to the opposite of many others’ thinking, there is a real history to the Blues as well.

In the past 20 years the Blues have had some exceptional players grace the turf of Stamford Bridge and have one plenty of trophies over the time.

However, some players will often be seen as above others in the past of Chelsea, but who might be the best to have played in recent years?

Here is football.london’s Chelsea correspondent Oliver Harbord think the best have been in the past 20 years.

Goalkeepers

Petr Cech

One of Chelsea’s best ever goalkeepers and by far the best I have ever seen play for Chelsea. Four Golden Glove awards to go along with the four Premier League title wins, and he will be top of the list for many Chelsea fans.

Thibaut Courtois

His time at Chelsea might have come to a bitter end, however there is no denying that he had some great moments at the Blues. Helped win two Premier League titles and won a Golden Glove himself.

Carlo Cudicini

Was named Chelsea’s Player of the Year in 2002 and only lost his place when Cech joined. Probably the best back-up goalkeeper in the Premier League for years and in the Inter Forever legends match he proved he still has the quality.

Defence

arcel Desailly

Just an absolute rock during his time at the Blues and consistently good throughout much of his career. A World Cup winner with France as well and a player really appreciated by non-Chelsea supporters as well.

John Terry

Terry needs little reason for being in the list. Maybe Chelsea’s greatest ever centre-back and a real leader on and off the pitch for the Blues. An easy pick to start and captain the team.

Ricardo Carvalho

Formed such a famous and fierce partnership with Terry and a classy player on the pitch as well, reading the game so well and timing his challenges to perfection.

Frank Leboeuf

You have to love Leboeuf more for the penalties that he constantly scored for Chelsea as well as his defending. A really pleasing defender to watch with his range of passing as well.

Ashley Cole

At his prime he was maybe the best left-back in the world and the Blues would be lucky to see another like him. Flying up and down the wing but also the fact that he was a decent defender as well.

Cesar Azpilicueta

A constant performer for the Blues and he continues to be so with his style of play and the fact that he gives everything to the team every time he plays. His versatility as well is a massive asset to the Blues.

Branislav Ivanovic

Not the most conventional right-back that you would see and the fact he is really more of a centre-back just proves how impressive he really was. Always had a knack for getting a goal, including in the Europa League final in 2013.

Graeme Le Saux

Le Saux often struggled with injuries when he made his return to the Blues, however when he did feature his style of play was superb and would have thrived as a more modern left-back in today’s game.

Midfield
Gus Poyet

Scored some stunning goals during his time at Stamford Bridge and was a really stylish player at times, getting into good positions and linking well with the front men.

Roberto Di Matteo

If only for that stunning strike in the FA Cup final against Middlesbrough, Di Matteo makes the line up. However, he offered so much more than that and was a really classy midfielder.

Midfield
Gus Poyet

Scored some stunning goals during his time at Stamford Bridge and was a really stylish player at times, getting into good positions and linking well with the front men.

Roberto Di Matteo

If only for that stunning strike in the FA Cup final against Middlesbrough, Di Matteo makes the line up. However, he offered so much more than that and was a really classy midfielder.

Frank Lampard

The ultimate goal-scoring midfielder and you would struggle to find a player that timed his runs any better than Lampard. Also scored some absolute stunners from outside of the box and his record stands for itself.

Dennis Wise

You can never have enough leaders in the Blues squad and that is exactly what Wise was. Maybe not the most talented player on the ball, but a true leader who others would follow.

Claude Makelele

Created the ‘Makelele Role’ at the base of the midfield and really paved the way for the likes of Kante to shine in the future. Some argue about who is better between the two Frenchman, however both have been exceptional in that position.

Arjen Robben

Quick, clever and at became one of the best wingers in the world. Playing on the right he would cut in so well on to his left foot and be a real danger either shooting or bringing others into play.

Michael Essien

A combative player in the middle of the park and would dominate teams at every ocassions. Also his goal against Arsenal was one of the best you are ever going to see.

Juan Mata

Such a classy player on the ball and could pick out some wonderful passes. Chelsea’s Player of the Year two times in a row before being bizarrely sold to Manchester United.

N’Golo Kante

Only been at the club a few seasons but one of the most impactful players in the side. Great energy, a wonderful tackler and starting to get more of an attacking edge to his game under Maurizio Sarri.

Forwards
Gianfranco Zola

One of the classiest footballers to have graced Stamford Bridge with his skill and ability on the ball. Now he is trying to take that on to the next generation of Chelsea players as assistant coach.

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink

Maybe one of the fiercest strikers of a football you are going to see at Stamford Bridge and he had an absolute rocket on him with his right, and he wasn’t too shabby with his left foot either.

Didier Drogba

There aren’t really enough words to sum up a legend like Drogba, but his biggest moments came when Chelsea needed him most, especially in the 2012 Champions League final.

Eden Hazard

One of Chelsea’s finest players and keeping him this summer was key for Chelsea developing under Sarri and at the moment it seems that he is enjoying life with the Blues so far.

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