THE DAY THE CUP WAS BROUGHT HOME

The European Cup has been paraded through the streets of London for the first time in its 57-year history as many thousands of fans, some of whom had made it back from Munich in time plus others who watched the game on television in the UK, lined the streets of Fulham as an open-top bus made its way from Stamford Bridge to Parson's Green.

The blue-clad, flag-waving, whistle and horn-blowing throng had been growing for hours and matched that of 1997 when a long wait for silverware ended with an FA Cup victory, and that of 2005 when an even longer wait for a league win came to an end. Every vantage point was filled.

Parade

The players and staff arrived at the Bridge from Heathrow Airport shortly before the 4pm parade start and hopped on board with the FA Cup as well as the Champions League silverware.

As with other recent parades the largest gathering was at Eel Brook Common where a big screen was located and Chelsea TV were broadcasting live.

There the bus stopped for some communal singing with the European-flavoured 'Champione, champione, ole, ole, ole' a popular choice.

Parade

David Luiz led the crowd through a more traditional 'Blue is the Colour', Gary Cahill announced he was going to bounce in a minute and 'Happy Birthday' was sung to penalty shoot-out hero Petr Cech who turned 30 today. 

Frank Lampard took the mic to say that Saturday had been the best night of the players' careers and that Chelsea was the best club in the world, before John Terry told the fans how much they deserved to win the Champions League.

And then it was off to the end of the parade and a full stop on a truly historic season, with the players now away from the club until July with mix of well-earned holiday and international matches between now and then.

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