Chelsea’s longest-serving player set to leave the club

Goalkeeper Matej Delac has signed a contract to join Danish side AC Horsens in the summer, according to internet-based newspaper¬†¬†The Croatian, who has been on our book since 2010, is currently the longest-serving player at Stamford Bridge, after John Terry’s departure last summer.

Incredibly though, he will leave without making a single competitive appearance for the club. He has never even been registered in the Premier League, and has been away on loan at eight different clubs. His only appearance of any sort came during 2016’s pre-season tour, in a win over Slovenian side Olimipija Ljubljana. His contract with us comes to and end in a couple of months, and he will leave on a free transfer. He is still only 25.

We signed Delac from Inter Zapresic when he was just 17, but due to work permit issues, he couldn’t find a way to play in the Premier League. Of course, this was a time when Petr Cech was at the height of his powers, with Ross Turnbull providing back-up.

His travels on loan took him to Portugal, France, Croatia, Holland, Czech Republic, Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina. He did achieve moderate success, being part of the Vitoria de Guimaraes side that won the Taca de Portugal in 2013, and also winning both the league and the cup with Sarajevo in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Now, he looks to achieve regular first team-football for his parent club for the first time in his career.

Speaking to the AC Horsens website, Delac said:

“I have heard very much about the Danish league and I really like AC Horsens, where players, staff around the team and other people from the club have taken good care of me.

I have had some good talks with Peder Hansen (goalkeeper coach, red.) And Bo Henriksen, and I look forward to working with them. This is a great opportunity for me, and I’m looking forward to playing time and show me.”

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