Chelsea have confirmed their squad numbers for the 2020/21 season, with the club making a number of significant changes to accommodate their five new arrivals.
Hakim Ziyech was the first player to arrive at Stamford Bridge this summer and he has been handed the No.22 shirt, which he wore in his first season at Ajax and then again two years later after Dusan Tadic was handed his No.10 jersey.
Ziyech’s preferred number was vacated by Christian Pulisic, who wore it last season, and the American has now been given the No.10 shirt following the departure of Willian.
The Brazilian was not the only player to leave Stamford Bridge on a free transfer this summer, with Pedro’s exit freeing up the No.11 to be handed to Timo Werner.
He has some pretty large boots to fill, with the No.11 most famously worn by Didier Drogba during his excellent career at Chelsea, while Oscar, Damien Duff, Boudewijn Zenden and Dennis Wise have all also worn it.
Meanwhile, perhaps suggesting he will be a regular in the starting XI, Thiago Silva has been handed the No.6 shirt by Frank Lampard.
The former PSG skipper has generally worn the No.2 or No.3 in his career, both of which are taken by Antonio Rudiger and Marcos Alonso respectively, so he has taken a shirt that has been worn previously by Marcel Desailly and Ricard Carvalho – though its most recent owner was Danny Drinkwater.
Similarly, left-back Ben Chilwell wore the No.3 for Leicester City but has had to switch to the No.21, which has most recently been worn by Davide Zappacosta.
Finally, record signing Kai Havertz has been granted his wish to wear the No.29 – which he wore throughout his career at Bayer Leverkusen – with Fikayo Tomori vacating the shirt.
Although the centre-back is rumoured to be close to leaving Stamford Bridge and potentially joining Everton on loan, he has willingly given up the No.29 to Havertz and will now wear No.14, which was last worn by Tiemoue Bakayoko.
Chelsea are offering a free shirt exchange for any supporters who bought a kit with a name and number on the back which has since been changed. [Metro]
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