By Josh Harris.
Nickname: The Blues
City: Located in west London.
The Blues, founded in 1905, have spent most of their history in the top tier of English soccer. Stamford Bridge has always been their home, but the Bridge hasn’t always been a modernized state-of-the-art 42,000 all-seater stadium. The new design was announced in the 1970s, but project problems occurred a couple of years later, which eventually led the club close to bankruptcy. A long legal battle meant that Chelsea’s future at the stadium wasn’t secured until the 1990s, when renovation work resumed. The Stamford Bridge freehold, the pitch, the turnstiles and Chelsea’s naming rights are now owned by Chelsea Pitch Owners, a non-profit organization in which fans are the shareholders. It is no secret that the fans and staff involved at Chelsea would like a bigger stadium, as the current club ownership have stated that a larger stadium is necessary in order for Chelsea to stay competitive with rival clubs who have significantly larger stadia, such as Arsenal and Manchester United.
Chelsea’s former manager Tommy Docherty changed Chelsea’s kit to blue shorts and white socks believing the colors were more modern and distinctive, since no other side used this combination.
Arch-Enemies: Chelsea do not have a traditional rivalry on the scale of the Merseyside derby or the North London derby because of their West London derbies with Fulham or Queens Park Rangers have not been as prominent over the years since the clubs have often been in different divisions. It has developed that Chelsea fans find their fiercest rivalries with Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United.
Famous Players: Chelsea have many notable players in their past, but one of the present would have to be Frank Lampard. The England midfielder has won a record three Player of the Year awards at the club, and has been the club’s top scorer in a season four times. Not to mention the 12 club cups Lampard has won at his time with Chelsea. Other notable players include Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, who averaged almost a goal every two games, Ray Wilkins, Petr Cech, Alan Hudson, Steve Clarke, Jimmy Greaves, Marcel Desailly, Didier Drogba, Claude Makalele, Bobby Tambling, Dennis Wise, Kerry Dixon, Peter Bonetti, Ron Harris, Peter Osgood, John Terry, Gianfranco Zola and Ashley Cole.
Honors: Domestically, Chelsea have won six league titles, the First Division four times, the Second Division twice. They have won seven FA Cups, four Football League Cups, four FA Community Shields, and two Full Members Cup. In Europe, Chelsea have once won the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, and twice the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup. They have also won the FIFA Club World Cup.
Club fact: Chelsea are owned by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, who is the 50th richest man in the world.
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