Chelsea icon returns to the Premier League for his first relegation battle ever

16.9.2020.  
Chelsea icon returns to the Premier League for his first relegation battle ever

Somewhat forgotten, probably because of his timid media presence, Branislav Ivanovic was a staple at Chelsea for eight a half seasons, leaving in 2017. Now, the powerfully built Serbian is back in the Premier League and will have a far different challenge than chasing titles, the 36-year-old is preparing for his first relegation battle with West Bromwich Albion.


The versatile defender arrives on a free after spending three and a half seasons with the Russian side Zenit Saint Petersburg, which he captained in the last year.


With 261 appearances in the Premier League alone, Ivanovic is a proper veteran of English football and he wants to prove himself to the fans once again.


"The Premier League is the best league in the world. I need to challenge myself and I am ready for the challenge. I am really happy to be back playing in the Premier League. I hope I am going to be successful here. I have a lot of ambition and I want to prove a lot of things. I will give everything for the team," said the 36-year-old.


As the club proudly stated, they are bringing in a Premier League and a Champions League winner. Also, a player who delivered offensively in big games for Chelsea in European competitions. His career is best depicted by WBA's social media team.



A man who never weight lifted, despite being built like a tank, Ivanovic is the record holder for Serbia in terms of appearances - 105, and his 377 games overall for Chelsea make him the 15th most capped player in the history of the Blues.


Both a right-back and a centre-back, the popular Bane most likely won't be playing at the full-back position in his age. At WBA, he'll be working with a manager he could communicate easily, the Croatian charismatic tactician Slaven Bilic, who knows Ivanovic's benefits transcend the pitch.


"He's a great addition for us, a team who are newly promoted. He ticks all the boxes. He's done everything in his career - it's been magnificent. We're delighted. He adds quality and experience on the pitch and off the pitch. So it is not only him, it is him plus the influence he will have on not just defenders but the whole team around him," said Bilic.


So far, in preparing for the relegation battle, WBA has brought in goalkeeper David Button from Brighton, centre-back Cedric Kipre (23) from Wigan, right-winger Matheus Perreira (24) from Sporting Lisbon for €9,100,000. While the biggest signing is that of a left-winger Grady Diangana (22) from West Ham for €13,500,000. A transfer that made several Hammers players publically disappointed. 



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