The Story of Chelsea

CHAPTER ONE

From our very unhumble beginnings

Chelsea Football Club's founders have big dreams - and they come to fruition. A new team in a new stadium captures the public's imagination right from the very start.

Henry Augustus Mears, Frederick Parker and even a dog are important figures at Chelsea's birth and there are more besides, including a man-moutain of a goalkeeper and ‘the greatest living Englishman’. And do you know that the Stamford Bridge football story might have started quarter-of-a-century earlier than it did?

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CHAPTER TWO

Aiming for the stars with stars

The crowds are among the highest and most delighted in the land as Chelsea spend big between the wars. This is vindication of the vision to start a new club in the capital on a mighty scale.

Not for the only time in our history, we recruit from north of the border, including signing the great Hughie Gallacher, and even royalty takes an interest, as do stars of stage and screen.

But will they see trophies lifted?

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CHAPTER THREE

Sowing the seeds of success

Finally Chelsea, again the best supported club in the land, have the league title to crown such status, and it is down to the work of a modernising manager.
 
His pioneering predecessor, meanwhile, sets the wheels in motion for exciting generations to come with an innovative nurturing programme that leads to the legendary Jimmy Greaves.

And one of our most famous fans begins his love affair with the club that would bring Hollywood stardust to Stamford Bridge...

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CHAPTER FOUR

Swinging London – Chelsea and the Kings of the King’s Road

Chelsea becomes the place to be seen and the place to watch football played with flair, as manager Tommy Docherty delivers silverware, Dave Sexton adds to the success and star players Peter Osgood, Chopper Harris, Peter Bonetti and many more become household names.


A record TV audience is drawn to watch the team in action in an epic encounter against big rivals, and thousands of Blues fans travel to support their heroes abroad against Spanish giants, with some hasty travel replanning required, and it proves not to be in vain! 

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CHAPTER FIVE

The Fulham Road rollercoaster

The Chelsea directors aim big again but on this occasion their timing proves off and a tempestuous period in the club's history results, but not without its moments of joy.

One big new stand does open and new heroes play in front of it, including a very youthful skipper in Ray Wilkins. He bursts onto the Stamford Bridge scene while the careers of some all-time greats draw to an end, as does the Mears dynasty, as the descedents of the club's founders struggle in a time of economic turmoil to keep it afloat... 

CHAPTER 5

CHAPTER SIX

A new broom and a new boom        

Chelsea embarks on a steep upward curve from the club's lowest point and vibrant football thrills the fans as a fresh era under new ownership begins in the 1980s, although Stamford Bridge grows increasingly under threat.


Top-flight status, recently regained, proves insecure too, but the bounce-back is impressive, we enter the million-pound-player market in the 1990s, and the managers change quickly as the Premier League begins. 

 

There is a big change affecting the future of the stadium too...

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CHAPTER SEVEN

The only place to be, every other Saturday

With the future of Stamford Bridge secure, Chelsea kick on and go continental, signing some of the most famous names in the game.

A foreign legion mixed with loyal players from closer to home thrive, collecting winners' medals for the first time in a generation.

Crowd numbers swell and having been denied entry to the very first European Cup nearly 50 years earlier, the Blues at last win a place in the biggest club competition of them all, beginning new rivarlies which will grow dramatically in years to come...

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CHAPTER EIGHT

The Roman Conquest

Chelsea Football Club becomes a soccer superpower, collecting the biggest prizes available both at home and abroad and creating history in many ways, with players who steadily become all-time greats spread throughout the team.

The catalyst is a new owner, freshly in love with the game and with enduring ambition for his club to be the best.

 

Naturally there are near misses as well as direct hits, and a colourful array of personalities on and off the pitch help write the modern-era story...

 

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CHAPTER NINE

The quest for the Holy Grail

Time is running out for a golden Chelsea generation who have won so much but are missing something big. 


There has been agony along the way and infamous near misses, but on a May night in Munich there is one more chance.


Taking it in the most dramatic of ways proves so sweet that we come back for more. It takes time for a repeat success but a thoroughly deserved one arrives, making Chelsea truly the pride of London...

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