There have been many strikers who have failed to make the grade at Chelsea in recent years, but there is a name that still lingers on in the corridors of Stamford Bridge, it is Adrian Mutu. He cost £15.8 million from Parma and in 27 games for the blues only managed 6 goals, that’s £2.63 million per goal! Not exactly value for money.
Mutu began his club career with Argeş Piteşti before being picked up by Dinamo Bucharest in 1999, he last long in the Romanian capital as his stellar performances, 22 goals in 33 games resulted in interest from abroad. Inter Milan swooped for Mutu in January 2000, he played 10 games for the Milan giants, though his performances were not reminiscent of those in Bucharest and he was sold in a co-ownership deal to Verona at the end of the 2000 season, a year later they bought him outright.
Parma then moved for the Romanian after a number of exceptional performances at Verona. At Parma he formed a deadly strike partnership with Adriano and it was after scoring 18 goals in his only season for Parma, Chelsea moved and made him part of the Abramovich revolution.
His Chelsea couldn’t have started any better, four goals in three matches. This form was not to be continued as his form dropped throughout the season and the goals dried up. It was the arrival of Jose Mourinho at Chelsea that somewhat signaled the end of Mutu’s Chelsea career. The troubles between the pair began with each accusing the other of lying about whether Mutu was injured for a World Cup qualifying match against the Czech Republic.
With limited first team opportunities, the final nail in the coffin came in September 2004; he failed a drugs test for cocaine and was sacked by Chelsea on 29 October 2004. He also received a 7-month ban and a £20,000 fine from the FA. This was not be the end of the matter, Chelsea’s case for breach of contract was upheld by sports highest court and Mutu has been ordered to pay £14.6 million as compensation to Chelsea. He has appealed twice and thus far failed in his attempts to have the ruling overturned. A third appeal is pending.
Currently an expensive flop, Chelsea may recoup all the money the paid for the Romanian international, making him just a flop.
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