This the third part of the series ‘Meet the Writers’ and today we have new writer George Priestman, formally @gpriestman1998 on Twitter!
Q. When did you start supporting Chelsea and why?
Despite being from the north, my family aren’t big football fans at all but I was very young and started playing football at about 3. One day we went looking around Soccer Sports which is now SportsDirect, and apparently I pointed towards a blue shirt which led to me being a Chelsea fan. But I’m willing to bet it was on offer knowing my parents.
Q. Is there any rivalry between football in your family?
Like I said, my family aren’t football fans, they watch it but none are fans. It’s a shame, I wish they were at times, but it’s all good.
Q. What’s your first memory of Chelsea
Thinking back, I remember the 2004-05 season. Especially running out to the car at family parties to listen to the radio for the Chelsea score and running back in to tell people Drogba had scored. Probably annoying a lot of people.
Q. During your time as a Chelsea fan, which season do you significantly remember?
We’ve had so many good seasons, we’ve been really lucky in the last 20 years. Of course, the league triumphs were incredible. Nothing can top the 2011/12 season. Despite a really tough year in the league, winning the biggest prize in football and the FA Cup was really an extraordinary time.
Q. Which specific match do you significantly remember?
Of course the 2012 final is the obvious one to go with here. Never have I felt as on edge or nervous or felt as happy at the end. What a crazy game of Football. It’s the reason you watch sport.
Q. Which player has been your favourite and why?
It’s very close between Lampard, Terry, Drogba and Hazard. Growing up I just loved having Drogba as our striker who just never seemed to let us down. Used to bully the world’s best and he was just an absolute killer up top.
Q. Which manager has been your favourite and why?
We’ve definitely had our fair share of managers, so there is a lot to choose from here. Prime Jose in 2004-07 was untouchable but even when he came back he had a lot of great moments. I used to love his arrogance and how he made us an elite team, as well as his press conferences. It really did feel like we had the best in the business. It’s a shame how it ended!
Q. What has been your worst memory as a Chelsea fan?
Football is a cruel, unforgiving game and there’s been a lot of bad moments of course it’s just football. The Champions league final with United, the ghost goal are the worst moments. However, the Barcelona semi-final still hurts so much because we were blatantly cheated out of that game against arguably one of the best sides ever. The worst part was all we could do is sit there and watch in disbelief.
Q. If you could only watch three Chelsea games ever again for the rest of your life, what would they be?
Three games for the rest of my life would definitely include the Champions League final 2012. Some of our battles with Liverpool over the years in the Champions League have to be in there – definitely the 4-4 draw which sent us through what a game. I really loved the 3-1 win away at the Etihad in conte’s first season. Made me believe we could actually win the league, plenty of strong characters on the pitch that day.
Q. Who is your favourite player in the squad at the moment?
Favourite player in the squad right now is a tough one. For years it’s always been Hazard but now it’s probably N’golo Kante because he’s such a perfect professional and we’ve been incredibly lucky to have him all this time. I just hope we can get him back to full fitness so he can get back to doing what he does better than anyone in the world.
Q. Which players who have been in a Chelsea shirt has been criminally underrated and overrated in your opinion?
An underrated player, Joe Cole and Ivanovic were both underrated by our fans. Probably would have to go with Joe Cole because in a time with so many good English players around at the time, he maybe was slightly forgotten about. Incredibly talented and hardworking, a real bad injury stopped him from really progressing sadly but I’m glad he’s working in coaching and punditry now he’s a really good, knowledgeable guy.
Q. What got you interested in writing about Chelsea and what made you join The Chelsea Echo?
I joined the Echo because it seemed like a great opportunity to join other passionate Chelsea fans in expressing our opinions. Football is my life and I’d love to work in journalism in sport. That’s what I’m trying to do and this is a great outlet for me which I’m very happy to be part of.