One of Chelsea legends Frank Lampard and John Terry could soon be back in the Premier League as coaches, with their Derby County and Aston Villa teams both in the Championship play-offs.
Blues loanees Fikayo Tomori and Mason Mount have been key figures for the Derby side managed by Lampard, Tomori even winning their Player of the Year award, and were both in the starting line-up again on a dramatic last day of the Championship season.
The Rams needed to beat West Bromwich Albion, themselves already guaranteed a spot in the play-offs, to be certain of holding off the challenge of Middlesbrough and Bristol City for sixth place.
A Bristol City side containing three players on loan from Chelsea – Tomas Kalas, Jay Dasilva and Kasey Palmer – fell out of the running as they went behind at Hull City, with a late equaliser not enough to put them back in contention.
However, Boro held up their end and kept the pressure on by getting a 2-1 win at already relegated Rotherham United, including a rare goal from former Blues midfielder John Mikel Obi, who smashed in their winner with a sweet strike from the edge of the box.
Derby started well, taking the lead inside the first 20 minutes, but were then pegged back shortly after half-time, meaning as it stood it would be Middlesbrough who snatched the final play-off spot.
Lampard’s side turned things around in dramatic style, though, going ahead again in the 70th minute and this time giving themselves breathing room, as they extended their lead after being awarded a penalty just three minutes later, holding on for a 3-1 win.
That means Derby will now face Leeds United, who have Izzy Brown in their squad, in the play-off semi-finals, with the first leg at Pride Park on 11 May before a trip to Elland Road four days later.
The other semi will see Aston Villa, with Terry as their assistant manager and top scorer Tammy Abraham hoping to recover from a dislocated shoulder in time to feature, take on West Brom with the first match at Villa Park.
That sets up a potential Wembley reunion for Lampard and Terry in the final on 27 May if their respective sides can come through the semis, fittingly going head-to-head in the next stage of their careers at the venue which saw them lift so many trophies playing alongside each other with Chelsea.