Michy Batshuayi

Michy Batshuayi completed his transfer to Chelsea from Marseille on 3 July 2016 and signed a five-year contract.

A powerful, fast striker, the highly coveted Batshuayi moved to Stamford Bridge having developed a reputation as a fine finisher following spells in France and Belgium. Skilful and with the ability to beat opposing defenders with his quick feet, he is a threat in the air and also comfortable holding the ball up and linking the play.

He was part of the Belgium squad at Euro 2016 and netted with his first touch on his tournament debut, converting a cross from his new Chelsea team-mate Eden Hazard in a 4-0 win over Hungary.

Batshuayi said after signing for the Blues: ‘I am delighted to sign for one of the biggest clubs in Europe and embark on the next chapter in my career. I hope I can help Chelsea win many trophies during my time at Stamford Bridge.

Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois have told me many good things about the club, and with Antonio Conte coming in it's an exciting time to become a Chelsea player.

‘This is a fantastic opportunity for myself and my family, I am looking forward to playing in the Premier League next season.’

In his initial months at Chelsea he was used mostly from the bench and in our first game of the season, at home to West Ham United, Batshuayi was introduced with the scores level at 1-1 and set up the winning goal for Diego Costa with a smart header in the 89th minute.

Five days later and again a substitute, Batshuayi scored the first of our two goals as we came from behind to win at Watford, opening his Chelsea account from close range after Eden Hazard’s strike had been parried into his path. Three days later he scored twice on his full debut in our League Cup win over Bristol Rovers at Stamford Bridge. 

Antonio Conte explained the young striker needed to learn about the requirments of Premier League football so chose to play Eden Hazard at the centre of the attack when Diego Costa was unavailable in that competition, but Batshuayi was handed FA Cup starts in early 2017 and responded with goals and assists. 

Without question, the highlight of his maiden season at the club came when Batshuayi scored the goal which clinched the Premier League title away at West Bromwich Albion in May. The Belgian had only been on the pitch a matter of minutes when Cesar Azpilicueta fizzed the ball across the face of goal, with the striker sliding in to divert it home and write his name into Chelsea history.

The campaign finished positively for Batshuayi who then scored in our 4-3 win over Watford, before netting a brace on the final day of the season as we beat Sunderland 5-1.

His knack of grabbing important goals despite not being a regular choice to start games continued in the first part of 2017/18. He netted a last-minute winner in a brilliant victory at Atletico Madrid in the Champions League, and his two goals against Watford in October helped turn the game on its head after his introduction off the bench with Chelsea trailing.

Soon after Batshuayi had helped the club advance to the fifth round of the FA Cup with two goals in a win against Newcastle, and having found the net 19 times in 53 appearances in his first 18 months as a Chelsea player, he moved on loan to Germany’s Bundesliga to play for Borussia Dortmund until the end of the season. 

 

Pre-Chelsea

Born in Brussels, Batshuayi played youth football across Belgium before beginning his professional career at Standard Liege in 2011, making his first-team debut for the club aged 18.

His first goal was an important one, the winner away at Copenhagen in the 2011/12 Europa League and a strike which sent Standard Liege through to the knockout rounds of the competition.

After scoring a brace in a Belgian Cup tie a week later, Batshuayi’s first league goal came in a 6-1 win over Germinal, but if his first season featuring regularly was predominantly about integration and adaptation, his second was one of real progression as the youngster began to find the net on a more consistent basis and became an important member of the side.

Batshuayi’s fast-growing reputation was enhanced further during the 2013/14 campaign when he finished as the second-highest scorer in the Belgian league, as well as hitting his first professional hat-trick in a 4-2 win against Oostende.

It was no surprise when Marseille came calling, and Batshuayi made the switch to Ligue 1 in the summer of 2014, making his debut as a replacement for Dimitri Payet on the first day of the season, before opening his account in a League Cup match against Rennes.

During his maiden campaign at the Stade Velodrome the youngster was used mainly as an impact substitute, but his ability to affect the game was evident on more than one occasion. Away at St-Etienne, Batshuayi scored twice within five minutes of coming on in a 2-2 draw, and another brace followed in a 4-0 win over Lens after he was introduced at the break. His goals that season contributed to Marseille qualifying for the Europa League.

His year-on-year improvement continued into his final season in France. He led the line impressively and once again displayed his clinical eye for goal. October was a particularly prolific month as he scored in every league game, including one away at Paris Saint-Germain when he stole in behind former Chelsea defender David Luiz to head home.

By the mid-season break only Zlatan Ibrahimovic had scored more goals, and Batshuayi ended the campaign by hitting four in the final six league matches, as well as netting in the French Cup final against PSG.

In total he scored 23 goals last season as well as providing 10 assists, statistics made all the more impressive considering he was playing in a team which finished 13th in Ligue 1.

Batshuayi was handed his international debut in March 2015 and scored shortly after replacing Christian Benteke in a 5-0 win over Cyprus. He was also on target for the Red Devils in a friendly win over Italy as they built towards Euro 2016.

He followed in the footsteps of Chelsea legend Didier Drogba as a centre-forward moving to Stamford Bridge from Marseille, and became the third Belgian in the squad, joining Hazard and Thibaut Courtois.