The good times are rolling at Chelsea Football Club (long may they continue), and the latest bit of positive news has come in the form of a shiny, new three-and-a-half year deal for Cesar Azpilicueta.
Signed for just £7.5m from Marseille in summer 2012, Azpilicueta now needs no introduction to Chelsea fans. It took him till November that year to make his first start for the Blues, but there’s been no looking back since. The Spaniard has gone on to prove his proficiency at not only his (apparently) natural position, right-back, but also on the opposite side of defence and most recently in a defensive three as well. He's been a consistent performer through the years and is arguably one of the best one-on-one defenders in the Premier League; it’s only fitting that the 27-year-old has been rewarded with a new deal that will tie him to the club till the summer of 2020.
'I’m really happy to have signed a new contract. Since I arrived here my target was to progress as a player and win trophies. This new contract gives me the chance to continue my relationship with the club, that’s what I wanted and obviously I’m really happy here.
‘We’ve had some really good moments so far this season. From day one, we started working very hard. We have a new manager with new ideas and I’m really happy to be working with him. Obviously we can still improve but the long-term aim for us is to win trophies, that is what we all want, the players, manager and fans.'
- Cesar Azpilicueta (source: Chelsea FC)
‘We are delighted Cesar has chosen to extend his stay with us. Since he arrived four years ago he has proved himself to be an excellent professional and a top player, which he shows in every single training session and match.
‘Cesar wasted no time in adopting the Chelsea mentality and spirit, and anybody who has met him will have seen his incredible and undiluted commitment to the Chelsea cause.’
- Michael Emenalo (source: Chelsea FC)
Antonio Conte, added a few words about Azpilicueta during his press conference.
Conte on Azpilicueta: 'I'm pleased with his work-rate, commitment and ability to play different positions. He's a really good player.' #CFC— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 13, 2016
Conte: 'Azpi is a really good player, his evolution is very high. He can play in different roles, it was a good deal for the club.' #CFC— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 13, 2016
Here’s to (at least) three more years of Cesar Azpilicueta (we’ll just call him Dave)!