We can safely say that you can count on the fingers of your one hand the attackers who left a bright impression during their stay at Stamford Bridge over the last 20 years. This category includes legend Didier Drogba, Nicolas Anelka and maybe Diego Costa.
But who are the biggest disappointments ever to wear the blue jersey?
Franco Di Santo
What was this guy doing in Chelsea? In the early days of his career, Di Santo was called “The New Maradona” for his incredible performances. This may have led Roman Abramovich to count 3.4 million pounds for his rights to an Argentinian club named Audax Italiano. Even after arriving in London, he started to impress with his performances, but for the second Chelsea team. For the first Chelsea team, he appeared in 16 games in his debut season for the club without scoring any goals. Logically then he was loaned to Blackburn, but there he didn’t shine much, scoring only 1 goal in 24 games. At the end of the campaign, he was sold to Wigan.
For some Chelsea fans, the transfer of the “kid” was successful, mainly because of that goal of the “Camp Nou”, which sent the team to the final of the Champions League, as well as because of his goal in the final of the Europa League a year later. In the first half of his stay at Stamford Bridge, however, hardly anyone will forget his disastrous games, his goal drought and his iconic misses that literally threw in shock all fans of the game.” After all, in 3 and a half seasons, Torres scored 45 goals in 172 games for Chelsea, which is not bad, but certainly not close to what was expected of a goal machine like him.
In the 2002-03 season, under the spotlight of the Apennines came a new attacking duo, Adrian Mutu and Adriano at Parma. They scored a total of 33 goals and so the interest in them was really big. And while the “Emperor” remained with the “Dukes” for half a season, Mutu was bought by Chelsea for 15.8 million pounds. His career in London started brilliantly with a goal in his debut for the team, followed by two more in the next game, but then something went wrong. The Romanian started to score less and less and finished the season with 6 goals in 25 games. At the beginning of the next campaign, Mutu was punished for 7 months after a doping test found that he had taken cocaine. He then terminated his contract with the club, for which later in the years he was sentenced to pay a giant penalty fee.
As a matter of fact, Morata might not have been such a bad transfer if he had not been paid the club’s record 60 million pounds at the time. He started quite strongly with 10 goals before Christmas, but then his form got slightly worse. Twice he was sent off with a second yellow card for simulation and increasingly began to look like someone who can not be relied on to take on the important games of Chelsea. Morata finished his first season in England with 15 goals in 46 games in all competitions, but his team remained in the fifth position in the final standings, despite being congratulated with a triumph in the FA Cup. In the middle of his second campaign at the club, he was loaned and then sold to Atletico Madrid.
One of Chelsea’s recent failures. In this case, it seemed that the “Blues” have finally found the new Didier Drogba. Batshuayi had become the top scorer for Olympique Marseille, and before that, during his time at Standard Liege, he had won the award for the best African in the Belgian league (yes, there is such an award). So his transfer to Stamford Bridge for 33.2 million pounds was relatively justified.” He became the first addition to Chelsea’s new manager Antonio Conte. And although in his debut season for the team he scored only 5 goals in 20 games, his inclusions were mostly as a substitute, so according to statistics, he had scored once every 47 minutes. After that, however, his performance got worse and he was sent to the second team and then loaned to Borussia Dortmund, Valencia, Crystal Palace and Besiktas.
This is one of the great tragedies of the 21st century because, with his move to Chelsea, Sheva not only took a step back but literally ruined his brilliant career. Roman Abramovich, however, desperately wanted the “devil from the East” in his squad, so he paid 31 million pounds in the summer of 2006 to have him. Shevchenko himself pointed as the main reason for his move to London, the constant telephone calls from Abramovich. Well, unfortunately, “Stamford Bridge” did not work out for Sheva and he scored only 22 goals in 77 games in 2 years at the club, after which he was loaned back to Milan, and after that sold to Dynamo Kyiv.
Pato got into big football too young, and maybe that played him a bad joke. His last good season was when he was 22 years old. After that, his attempts to revive his career just weren’t enough, except for some not-bad seasons for the Brazilian clubs Corinthians and Sao Paulo. In January 2015, he somehow ended up at Chelsea on loan for the spring half-season. During his presentation, Pato said that this transfer was a dream come true for him, but by the end of his stay in London, he played only 2 games, in which he scored once from the penalty spot.
After 4 outstanding seasons with the team of RB Leipzig, Werner became one of the German players that arrived in London. His brutal statistics of 95 goals in 159 games prompted Roman Abramovich to pay 47.5 million pounds for his rights, an amount considered even small given the player’s skills. Well, it turns out that’s not exactly the case. Like Morata, Werner has become more famous for his stunning misses and heaps of cancelled-out goals than for his goalscoring skills. In 2 years at the club, he has scored 23 goals in 89 games, perhaps the most significant of them was in the semi-finals of the Champions League in 2021. against Real Madrid. Obviously, his time at Stamford Bridge is not over yet.
Having gained a reputation as a clinical scorer at Inter, Lukaku was returned to Chelsea for the cosmic sum of 97.5 million pounds. In the previous period, he scored 0 goals in 15 games, but then he was too young, so the fans of the team decided that this Romelu, who returns, will be a better version of himself. Well, it turns out that’s not exactly the case. During the season the Belgian scored 15 goals in 44 games, but in the important moments and in the big games he was absolutely invisible on the field. In addition, he managed to come into conflict with the manager Thomas Tuchel, so his appearances in the second part of the campaign were mostly from the bench.