On an emotional afternoon at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea supporters and past and present players bid farewell to Gianluca Vialli, one of our greatest.

Sunday’s game against Crystal Palace was our first at home since Vialli’s death at the age of just 58. On a poignant afternoon in west London, our former player and manager was celebrated with tributes before kick-off, remembered by many who knew him best, and his name was regularly sung loud and clear during the 1-0 win, never more so than after Kai Havertz headed us in front with a header reminiscent of Vialli at his peak.

Many supporters were wearing shirts and scarves of Vialli’s vintage, and fans descended on the Museum to leave their own messages of condolences. The Chelsea Supporters Trust laid a wreath by the memorial set up near the Britannia, and they echoed the sentiment felt by so many in the past 10 days.

‘Gianluca was a foundational pillar of restoring the club’s identity. He was loved by everyone at our football club and the thoughts of the CST and board and all members around the globe are with Gianluca’s family at this difficult time.’

The matchday programme was dedicated to Vialli, and the Chelsea players warmed up in shirts bearing the Italian’s name and number on their back.

As the players made their way onto the pitch ahead of kick-off on a cold but beautiful winter’s afternoon, two huge banners celebrating Luca were unfurled in the Shed and Matthew Harding Stands.

With the players gathered around the centre circle, they were joined by several former Blues who played alongside Vialli, under him, or in some cases both. All eyes turned to the big screen where a moving video, with words read out by Graeme Le Saux, was shown.

Then everyone joined in an emotional minute’s applause, with Luca in everyone’s hearts. How dearly anyone with Chelsea in their hearts will miss him.