When we talk about the best Chelsea midfielders ever, a flood of memories and emotions overwhelms every true Chelsea fan. The club has seen some extraordinary talent grace the midfield over the years, and each player brought their unique flair and skills to the game. In this article, we will explore the top 10 best Chelsea midfielders ever!
10 Greatest Chelsea Midfielders of All Time
1. Frank Lampard
Frank Lampard, the epitome of a box-to-box midfielder, stands tall as the best Chelsea midfielder ever. With his incredible goal-scoring ability, precise passing, and tireless work ethic, Lampard became Chelsea’s all-time leading goalscorer with an astonishing 211 goals. A youth product from West Ham, Lampard’s £11 million transfer to Chelsea in 2011 was a turning point in the club’s history.
Not only did Lampard contribute with goals, but he was also a crucial playmaker, amassing the second-most assists in the history of the Premier League. His long-range shots and late runs into the box were feared by opponents, making him a genuine match-winner.
2. N’Golo Kante
In recent years, N’Golo Kante has been the embodiment of a defensive midfielder par excellence. After winning the Premier League with Leicester City, Kante’s move to Chelsea in 2016 for £30 million turned out to be an absolute bargain. His ball-winning ability, intelligent interceptions, and tireless work rate made him a vital asset in Chelsea’s midfield.
Kante’s relentless energy and the ability to disrupt opposition attacks have earned him widespread recognition as one of the best defensive midfielders in the world. His tenacity and crucial tackles have often bailed Chelsea out of tight situations, making him a favorite among fans and fellow players alike.
3. Claude Makelele
Claude Makelele’s impact on Chelsea’s playing style was so profound that they named a position after him. Signed from Real Madrid in 2003 for £16.8 million, Makelele transformed Chelsea’s midfield with his deep-lying defensive skills. His ability to read the game, break up opposition attacks, and distribute the ball efficiently was unparalleled.
Makelele’s role in Chelsea’s Premier League title victories was pivotal, and his influence extended far beyond the statistics. He set the standard for defensive midfielders worldwide and became a reference point for the “Makelele role” in modern football.
4. Eden Hazard
Hailed as one of the most electrifying attacking midfielders in the modern game, Eden Hazard’s arrival at Chelsea in 2012 from Lille brought immense excitement. Hazard’s dribbling skills, creativity, and ability to change the game single-handedly made him one of the best Chelsea midfielders ever.
His versatility allowed him to play as a winger, attacking midfielder, or even as a second striker. Hazard’s combination of speed, technique, and vision allowed him to unlock even the most stubborn defenses. During his time at Chelsea, he scored 110 goals in 352 appearances, earning him a place among the top 10 all-time goal scorers for the club.
5. Arjen Robben
Arjen Robben’s time at Chelsea may have been short, but his impact was immense. The Dutch winger’s blistering pace, mesmerizing dribbling, and deadly left foot made him one of the best left-midfielders to grace the Premier League. Robben’s ability to cut inside from the wing and unleash powerful shots on goal left defenders helpless.
Although injuries marred his time at Chelsea, Robben’s unforgettable moments, like the breathtaking solo goal against Liverpool in the FA Cup, made him a fan favorite. Despite leaving for Real Madrid, Robben remains a cherished memory in the hearts of Chelsea fans.
6. Michael Essien
Michael Essien, fondly known as “The Bison,” was a dynamic box-to-box midfielder who combined power, skill, and versatility in equal measure. His ferocious tackles, driving runs, and thunderous strikes from distance made him a formidable force in Chelsea’s midfield.
Essien’s presence in the center of the pitch provided Chelsea with a strong defensive shield and a potent attacking threat. His impact during Chelsea’s successful years under Abramovich cannot be overstated, as he played a pivotal role in the club’s multiple title triumphs.
7. Juan Mata
Juan Mata’s arrival at Chelsea from Valencia in 2011 added a touch of Spanish flair and creativity to the team. The attacking midfielder’s vision, passing range, and impeccable ball control made him a key orchestrator of Chelsea’s attacking play.
Mata’s ability to pick out intricate passes and create goal-scoring opportunities endeared him to the fans. He played a crucial role in Chelsea’s memorable Champions League and Europa League triumphs, cementing his status as one of the club’s best midfielders.
Willian’s time at Chelsea was characterized by moments of brilliance and match-winning performances. The Brazilian right-winger’s speed, dribbling, and ability to create space made him a constant threat to opposition defenses.
While his goal-scoring record might not match some of the other midfielders on this list, Willian’s impact in crucial games and his ability to change the outcome with a moment of brilliance made him a valuable asset during his time at Stamford Bridge.
9. Damien Duff
Damien Duff, a truly gifted winger, showcased his skills on both the left and right-wing during his time at Chelsea. His explosive pace, direct style of play, and exceptional work rate made him a fan favorite.
Duff played a vital role in Chelsea’s success during the early 2000s, helping the club secure two Premier League titles and the League Cup. His partnership with Arjen Robben on the wings was a sight to behold, creating nightmares for opposition defenders.
10. Terry Venables
Terry Venables, although primarily a midfielder, was versatile enough to play in various positions across the pitch. His creativity, vision, and leadership skills made him an influential figure in Chelsea’s squad during the late 1950s and early 1960s.
Venables’ impact extended beyond individual performances, as he played a crucial role in Chelsea’s promotion to the top flight and helped secure the Football League Cup in 1965. His contributions earned him a place among the best Chelsea midfielders ever.
That conludes the list of the 10 best Chelsea midfielders ever. Their legacy continues to inspire the current generation of players and captivate the hearts of the club’s faithful fans. From Frank Lampard’s record-breaking goals to N’Golo Kante’s defensive prowess, each midfielder on this list brought something unique to the club’s rich history.
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