Chelsea faces Real Madrid in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final. Both clubs despite their history are meeting only for the 4th time, with Chelsea winning all two of the last three previous encounters and drawing one.
While their business on the pitch has been few and far between, both clubs have transferred players between themselves as many as 9 times off the pitch. With the most high-profile transfer that of a certain Eden Hazard.
In this article, ahead of their clash on Tuesday night, we highlight the players who have traded Stamford Bridge for the Bernabeu and vice versa.
The most high-profile transfer between the two clubs, Eden Hazard after 7 years at Chelsea moved to Real Madrid who had been long-time admirers, with the player admitting it was a dream to play in the white jersey of Real Madrid. Chelsea earned a 115m euro transfer fee for the player. While he hasn’t lived up to the hype, Eden Hazard has a La Liga title to his name and will be hoping his club moves past their challenge in the shape of his former team and go on to win the one club trophy missing from his collection.
Considered surplus to requirements, Kovacic first joined Chelsea on loan, after a season where he emerged Chelsea Player of the Year, Chelsea paid a transfer fee of 45m euros to retain the services of the Croatian. The combative midfielder has become a mainstay in the middle of the field for Chelsea, enjoying playing time under former coach and Chelsea legend, Frank Lampard and Thomas Tuchel, his replacement. Whether partnering in midfield with Jorginho or with tireless Ngolo Kante, Kovacic has justified every euro of his 45m euros transfer fee.
Unsettled Spanish striker, Alvaro Morata seemed the answer to Chelsea’s striking problems. Unwanted by coach Zinedine Zidane, Morata secured a move to the London Club with Chelsea paying 66m euros for his services. Morata’s problems continued at Chelsea as he rarely found the net, after two years in London and with a FA Cup title to his name, Morata moved to Juventus where he previously excelled on loan.
Homesick, Courtois publicly courted Real Madrid in the media and pushed for a transfer back to the Spanish capital, he got his wish in a 34m euros deal. A deal Chelsea fans were very bitter about as it dashed their hopes of a dependable goalkeeper for the long term, as a replacement to record-holding Chelsea legend Petr Cech.
The only player who has had a role named after him. The Makelele role, coined after the tireless French midfielder. Denied a new contract at the Bernabeu, Makelele moved to the English capital for a fee of 20m euros. Currently a technical mentor for young players at Chelsea, Makelele enjoyed domestic success at Chelsea winning the Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup, and Community Shield in his 5 years at Chelsea.
One of the first signings of the Abramovich era, Njitap like Makelele moved to London after a brilliant showing for Cameroon at the FIFA Confederations Cup for a sum of 10m euros.
Wanted at Real Madrid by his former coach and mentor, Jose Mourinho, Essien joined Madrid on loan in the 2012/2013 season.
Considered surplus to requirements, Kovacic first joined Chelsea on loan, after a season where he emerged Chelsea Player of the Year, Chelsea paid a transfer fee of 45m euros to retain the services of the Croatian.
Exploding to fame in the Premier League under Jose Mourinho, Robben didn’t turn down a chance when Real Madrid came calling and signed a 5-year contract with the Los Blancos.
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