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  • #24163
    nine nine nine
    Moderator

    Gianfranco Zola rejoins Chelsea having enjoyed a wonderful seven-year playing career at Chelsea during which he scored 80 goals, including the winner in the 1998 European Cup Winners’ Cup final. He helped us win four major trophies.

    About his return to Chelsea, Zola said:

    ‘For me it is an amazing thing. I am very willing to work hard because it is going to be a difficult challenge but I am pleased to be here, to work hard with Maurizio to be successful. It would be great to be successful with Maurizio and for the club and I will give my best, as I did in the past as a player, so I will give my best in my new position.

    ‘I am very much looking forward to the challenge in general. I would love us to start well and we are all very excited to start this new adventure.’

    On heading off for the first pre-season game in Perth, Australia, he added: ‘It is a long way to travel but we are very pleased to go there and entertain our supporters over there. I know they are big fans so it will be a pleasure.’

    One of our all-time greatest players and a huge fans’ favourite, Zola made 312 appearances for the Blues between 1996 and 2003. He brings a wealth of knowledge to the assistant’s role having managed in both the Premier League and the Championship, and worked as an assistant for Italy Under-21s.
    Zola initially moved to Chelsea in November 1996 from Parma, having previously played for Napoli, when he performed an understudy role to Diego Maradona as they won the Serie A title in 1989/90.

    The Italian made his debut for the Blues in a draw away at Blackburn Rovers and ended his first season in English football by laying on Eddie Newton’s goal in our FA Cup final win over Middlesbrough with a stunning back-heel. He also picked up the Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year award.

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    #24167
    Big Jim
    Participant

    Fantastic player, nice to have him back in the PL in any capacity.

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    #24168
    nine nine nine
    Moderator

    Cheers Jim.

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    #24172
    Editor
    Keymaster

    Yeah loved watching Zola. One of those opposition players you just couldn’t help but admire

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    #24179
    nine nine nine
    Moderator

    Ed, Gianfranco hasn’t been very successful in management but Assistant to Sarri at Chelsea is made for him imo and I think in that role he will be a real asset to the club and a very wise advisor to Sarri too.

    I’m also hoping perhaps forlornly that it might help convince Hazard to give us at least another season as being Coached by Zola on the attacking side of the game could improve him still further. Cheers 999

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    #24185
    BlazeBlaze
    Participant

    whats Zola going to be doing in terms of assistant coaching? anyone know?

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    #24186
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Blaze, 999, ed, no idea how he’ll be employed as a coach. The big issue last season for me was the loss of Steve Holland. Chelsea’s loss was very much Englands gain.

    Holland had the respect of Chelsea players and as we’ve seen got our side very well versed and drilled and organised. England finished where they did in part because of Hollands coaching ability.

    IF Zola can help with the organisational side of the game, can offer attacking insight for players like Willian and Hazard, help translate Sarris ideas to the players but more importantly have the respect of the players, Im hoping he brings that 90’s feel good factor to the club that held us in such good stead.

    Heres to hoping, a legend is in the dug out and fingers crossed our new approach to attacking football pays off. Reckon it’s going to be a fantastic rollercoaster…

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    #24188
    nine nine nine
    Moderator

    442, I’m not sure what we’re going to achieve over the next couple of years but I doubt it’s going to be boring under Sarri and Zola.

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    #24192
    RoverRover
    Participant

    Zola my favorite look forward to see what exactly his role will be? Maybe double up from the bench.

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    #24193
    RoverRover
    Participant

    Pity he never stayed another season in 2003. Could have seen so much more of him and his tricks

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