|Desc||Always reliable and diligent when defending, his versatility has also seen him establish himself as one of the great defenders of the last decade in the Premier League. Rarely injured, the Spaniard has proven to be a genuine bargain since his £7m move from Marseille. He played every minute of the 2016/17 title-winning campaign in the second of his two titles, one of just four players to accomplish that feat (joining John Terry, Wes Morgan and Gary Pallister)|
|Org||Spain National Team|
|Club as Player||Chelsea FC|
2015 03 07 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta on Eden Hazard] Messi and Ronaldo are two monsters of football. But Eden has great quality and I think we will see the [FIFA Ballon d’Or] in his hands in the future
2019 07 26 Retrieve
[Chelsea star Cesar Azpilicueta says that the Blues are capable of challenging for the Premier League title next season] Last season we finished third but it’s in our hands to try to reach the top. Well the truth is that last year they opened a big gap. They raised the level more than anybody could imagine. They have been working together with the group of players and the manager for a few years. But it’s up to us to raise our level by working hard, by having the focus and the mentality to fight for this title. Last season we finished third but it’s in our hands to try to reach the top
[though goals from Tammy Abraham and Ross Barkley carried the Stamford Bridge side to a 2-1 win over Barcelona on Tuesday. This victory has fuelled the belief in the 29-year-old that the squad is nearing where their boss expects them to be] I think the team is getting close to what the manager wants from us. We are looking forward to starting the season. In my seven years here in Chelsea I have had a few different managers. It’s true that this summer is something different. We have a transfer ban that we never had before. We are not here to complain about any situation, we are here to work hard. We have a new manager, everyone is pushing really hard
2019 07 28 Retrieve
[Reading vs Chelsea. Cesar Azpilicueta believes the squad is beginning to hit the standards the manager expects] I think the team is getting close to what the manager wants from us. We are looking forward to starting the season. In my seven years here in Chelsea I have had a few different managers. It’s true that this summer is something different. We have a transfer ban that we never had before. We are not here to complain about any situation, we are here to work hard. We have a new manager, everyone is pushing really hard
2019 08 12 Retrieve
[Azpilicueta insists Chelsea will ‘learn’ from Man Utd hammering] We’re obviously very disappointed with the result because we controlled the game, especially in the first half, and created a lot of chances but we couldn’t score. It’s a tough scoreline to take but we weren’t clinical in the boxes and after we conceded two goals in two minutes, things were more difficult for us. From that point, we were more open and gave them more spaces, they got more confidence and at the end, we got a tough result. We deserved more but it is what it is and we have to move on
[Azpilicueta went on to defend Lampard’s selection] We trust in them and they are here because they deserve to be here. They are fighting in every training session and now we have a massive opportunity to create a fantastic group. Everyone would like to start the season in a better way but we have to learn from every game and come back stronger
2019 08 23 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta is excited to see the impact that Chelsea’s young players can make as he welcomes a change of approach under new manager Frank Lampard] The level they - Man City and Liverpool - showed in the Premier League has been amazing. It’s the first time in history that a team over 90 points doesn’t win the league, so when you see the results you know they set the standard very high. It’s up to us, and to the other teams, to rise to their level. It’s true that the transfer ban is not a help, but I believe in the group that we have. I believe in the young players that we have. A lot of players through the academy have been on loan and we’ll work hard to carry it as far as we can.
We have the examples of Tammy Abraham, of Reece James, of Mason Mount playing regularly in the Championship [last season]. We have the academy players who reached the final of the UEFA Youth League like Conor Gallagher. Charlie Brown was the top scorer. The left-back, Ian Maatsen, won the European U17 Championship, so we have very good players coming from the bottom. But they need time as well. It’s difficult to go straight [into the first team] but the loan team, the academy, they are doing an amazing job. We’re very happy to have Ethan Ampadu, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Andreas Christensen and Ruben Loftus-Cheek and they have been doing a very good job. I think it’s what the loan team are looking for - clubs to play, to get experience, and then when they get back they have improved.
That’s what they are trying to do and I think the results have been very good. Maybe we don’t get the credit that we deserve because we didn’t get many players through the academy to the first team. I think that this situation is something that people felt with Chelsea that we win trophies in the academy but then we just send 40 players on loan and don’t get them to the first team. I think in the last few years we have changed this. They are still winning trophies in the academy and some are getting minutes on the pitch so I think it is what we all want - to get academy players into the first team. I think Chelsea is a big team and it is difficult to get in the first team, but they are doing a very good job. We are seeing it now and we are sure we will get more and more through the years. We are ready to have a very strong team.
2019 09 17 Retrieve
[Azpilicueta was also targeted by Gudjohnsen as well as fans on social media after the game, with suggestions that the captain should have taken charge of the situation. But the Spaniard reiterated Lampard’s claim, and said the players talking to him were simply trying to build his confidence before taking the kick] Ross is one of the best penalty takers in the team and one who takes them. He had the confidence and he was unlucky hitting the bar. They [the other players around him] were encouraging him to have the confidence to score. There was high expectation. They were trying to get him into the best condition. Hopefully next time it goes in
2019 10 02 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta claims Jorginho is revelling in new Chelsea role under Lampard] Jorginho has impressed me a lot since he arrived here with us. Obviously he was doing what the manager (Sarri) at the time wanted from him, which was to play short and to control the game in a different way, to touch a lot of the ball maybe without being dangerous by putting balls behind the defence. I think this season he has adapted to the [new] manager. He prefers to play a bit longer, to switch the play with longer balls to get more commitment in the final passes to get more chances for the strikers. Apart from that, his work rate has been amazing. The way he reads the game, he wants to press, he recovers a lot of balls. He is a very important player for us through the season
[The 30-year-old is enjoying working with Lampard and has his sights set on maximum points this week] For myself, the season before the manager asked something different. We are playing with more intensity, we are pressing higher up the pitch. We want to control the game, we attack with the full-backs and cross more. Last season we were more trying to get through the lines with our passes. I’m enjoying it and hopefully we can take the momentum from the last two wins at home into this game. And into the Southampton game on Sunday, where we would like to finish both with wins and go into the next month with better results
2019 10 03 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta says Christian Pulisic will prove very important to Chelsea] As the manager said, we are a group, we are all important on this long path, we are only in October. Sometimes the manager has to make decisions, but I see him [Pulisic] working hard in training. What I can say is to encourage him to keep working, because we know it is a new country, a new team, a bit of time of adaption is needed. I see his character, working hard in training, and I’m sure he will be very important for us for the season
[He added after seeing the Blues collect their first European points of the season on French soil] For a few of them it was their first Champions League game, for some of them it was their first game away from home. Hopefully we can all live that kind of night for a long time. It was a good result. We were coming from a difficult moment against Valencia. We knew Lille would be tough and they showed why. We were controlling the game well in the first 25 minutes until we conceded from a set-play. We had to dig in to get the three points
2019 10 08 Retrieve
[Club captain Azpilicueta talked up Tammy Abraham’s contribution] I had confidence in him because I have known him since he was quite young. Every time I saw him his work ethic was very good. Last season he had an amazing spell at Aston Villa, he was a key player for them, he scored a lot of goals. I knew he was ready for us and for the Premier League. As soon as he arrived he worked hard and wanted to help the team. Strikers live for goals so it’s great for him. He’s doing incredibly well and he scored an amazing goal. I’m very happy for him and I’m sure he can give us a lot more happiness in the future
[Azpilicueta was keen to emphasise Chelsea’s progress as a team as well as Abraham’s individual heroics] We are improving. We knew at the beginning sometimes we were playing well enough to win games, but we were a bit unlucky. The team has been working hard. At the start of the season we had the belief and the confidence in everyone. We are starting to get results, but we are still improving and we know we can go even higher
2019 10 24 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta has backed Callum Hudson-Odoi to be a massive player for Chelsea despite him failing to have a significant impact in his side’s 1-0 win over Ajax] We can’t forget that Callum is 18 years old and his progression in the last 12-15 months, with an injury in between… we have to be realistic. The way he worked for the team, the way he always showed the ability to get the ball, to dribble, not to have any fear and hide in-between the full-back, I think Callum is a very important player for us.
He’s going to be a massive player in the future for Chelsea but we have to accept the progression. To be 18 years old and the way he’s playing is amazing. The players who have more experience in these games try to help the young lads. For some of them it’s the first year in the Premier League, the first year in the Champions League, so we have to be a help for all of them, use our experience to keep them confident and make them express themselves the way they have been doing in the academy. It is very important for them to feel confident. It is the way we are working but a lot of credit goes to them because they are good lads, they listen, they want to improve in every training session and learn from the more experienced players, the manager and the staff. It is the right way to keep improving
[Azpilicueta has been impressed with the work the USMNT Christian Pulisic has been doing behind the scenes after a difficult start to life at Stamford Bridge] Christian has been working very hard, we know that only 11 can start and seven subs are on the bench. So fair play to Christian for continuing to work hard. When he has come on in the last two games he has made a significant impact and he changed the game. He nearly got an assist last Saturday but he was running at people, he was taking people on, creating chances and tonight he got the assist. We are here to work as a team, we know that everybody is important and we have to all go in the same direction.
Christian is 21 and he has been playing since he was young at Dortmund. But England is different. The pace of the game is different and we cannot forget this as well. Since Christian arrived from the beginning he has been very good. Sometimes you need more time to adapt to the game but he has done it in the last two games. That’s what we need Christian to do but we need to keep calm, to work with the young lads, we know that. We have a young squad but we have been working really hard since pre-season and the only way I see this team improving is by the work ethic that we have had in every training session and every game. I am very pleased for Christian because it is a good moment for him
[Azpilicueta expressed his frustration at his own form at the start of the season] I have this passion for defending and not conceding goals. Obviously at the beginning of the season we were conceding a lot of goals so I was not pleased at all and I was not happy with myself. My job is to keep clean sheets and help the team. I know I got criticism, which was fair, because I was not at my level. My job is to work hard in training sessions, to work on my game, to keep improving and obviously I am very pleased to keep two clean sheets in a row. I am happy with the three points against a very strong side
2019 11 04 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta says the Premier League’s use of VAR is difficult to understand] We have a lot of meetings about the VAR. There is a screen on the pitch for the ref to look and see why he made the decision not to whistle for a penalty. We are not using the system in the right way, which is something to help the referees make the right decision. They are human, the same as players. We make mistakes but why not use the whole system in the right way? That’s my big point in this case and in other cases that we have seen. It could help
[Azpilicueta has fallen foul of VAR himself this season, celebrating a goal against Liverpool which was eventually chalked off] It is sometimes difficult to understand. I felt that in my own self when I had a goal ruled out from the VAR after 10 seconds, which is very disappointing. But when we have to say the VAR has to help the referee when it is a clear and obvious mistake it should be straight away. Why not instead of being in the middle of the pitch he could go to the touchline and see as many replays that he needs to see because it is a big decision and it’s worth it to spend one extra minute to make the right decision. We had meetings and sometimes I’m happy to help when they need to. My biggest disappointment is we’re not using the full system in the right way when we could do it and spend the same amount of time
2019 11 21 Retrieve
[Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta has wished former manager Jose Mourinho all the best as Tottenham’s new head coach] I can talk only when Jose was here at Chelsea with us. We won trophies, and now football moves on. I wish him all the best even though he goes to a rival. I have good memories with him and I have played many times under him and against him. Obviously when we play against each other we both want to win for our teams, but this is football. I wish him well
2019 11 25 Retrieve
[Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta believes Wednesday’s meeting with Valencia is a must-win game] It is a must-win. We have a great chance to really close the qualification for the next stage. We have to take the game like a final because we can qualify there. We play against a good side that beat us at the Bridge in the first game. So we have to recover well from the game. Our heads have to be ready for that game because it is a final. When you are at Chelsea every game is important. Every game you have to go to win and that’s the mindset for the next game
2019 12 05 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta believes Tammy Abraham is capable of becoming the Premier League’s top scorer] He has the potential to go even higher. We know we are still in December with a lot of games but with his passion and hunger, he is capable of getting to the top, for sure. I am confident that he can get many more goals because of the way he is working and improving since he started pre-season. Not only is he scoring goals. He is playing for the team, recovering the ball and he made a tackle in our own half - that was an amazing effort for him. He made an assist as well [against Villa]. I am not just looking into his goals as a number because he is doing more than that. His desire is amazing. When he was injured, he wanted to come back as soon as possible.
I think for him it was special to play against Aston Villa where he got promoted to the Premier League and where he had an amazing spell there. So for him, it was a special game. I am very happy for him because he showed that strength of character to play, score and get an assist. He was key for us. He showed his desire in pre-season to be a striker for Chelsea. It is something he has dreamt about and he worked for it all the way through the academy. He got his chance and is making the most of it. Vardy is doing an amazing season with a lot of goals and Tammy is behind him so if he is there, it is because he deserves it
It’s something we have to improve because we are conceding a lot of goals. We made it more difficult for ourselves. If we kept a clean sheet and went in 1-0 at half-time then the second half could be more open and we would have had everything in front of us. And against West Ham. If we don’t concede I’m sure we could push and maybe score one goal and win. Against Crystal Palace, even if it was not our best game, 2-0 was enough. It’s an area where we need to improve because defensive solidity is key throughout a season and I’m sure we’ll keep working hard to get that. Offensively, we’re creating a lot of chancing and scoring a lot of goals.
We are creating more [chances than we are taking, though], I’m sure we’ll get that killer instinct better through the season. You’re going to have games like this. You can’t win every game 3-0 in the first half and thing go easy. Sometimes you have to dig in and work hard - even though we were 1-1 at half time and deserved to be ahead. The reaction of the team after the equaliser was very good. We put a lot of pressure on them. Even at 2-1 we created a lot of chances. It was just a lack of killing the game to enjoy the final minutes. We played three games without a win. We needed a good reaction from Saturday. It wasn’t a good game and not a good result. We were facing a good side and we saw that. We had to suffer until the end. The most important thing was the three points [against Villa], even though we could have won more comfortably with the way we played
2019 12 10 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta says Champions League is where Chelsea belong] Champions League is where Chelsea belong. We know it was a tough group - last year’s semi-finalists Ajax have been knocked out. We had to fight and recover after losing against Valencia at home in our first game. But now we are in the last 16 the focus has to switch back to the Premier League until the competition starts again next year
2019 12 22 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta later confirmed that Rudiger was targeted, and pleaded for fans to stop such monkey chants] It is made very clear to us all that if we have heard any racist incident to report it. Tony came to me and told me he was listening to racist songs towards him so I reported it to the referee. We are very concerned and aware of this behaviour. Altogether we need to make it stop. I hope everything gets clear and we eradicate it as soon as possible. It‘s an issue not just in football but in life
2019 12 23 Retrieve
[Azpilicueta encouraged by rapid progress under Lampard] We cannot forget the young players and where they were last year when they were playing a different competition and they were playing in different circumstances. We know that Chelsea requires the highest level in every game and that means playing every three days in the Champions League and in the Premier League, every game fighting to win and be at the top, so we have to respect that and the young players have shown great spirit and great mentality to grow day by day, together with the staff and with the coach. We the senior players try to help them as much as possible but they have shown great strength and it is one more step towards their development. I am very pleased with the whole team
[Willian bagged a brace in a 2-0 derby win over Tottenham] We have been conceding a lot of goals, we did not win points, it is a fact that we lost many games for Chelsea and now we have come to Tottenham to play a team that were in good form and we showed great spirit, we fought and we know what it means for the fans and for all of us. That spirit made a huge difference in the game. It feels very good for us, for the fans, to come here and win after a run that was not the best, and to keep a clean sheet. It is a very good win. We prepared very well during the week, we knew that we were coming to play against a tough team but we did our job, we knew that we had to recover that fighting spirit and that it was a London derby with what that means to everybody in Chelsea. We did very well, with the quality we have in the team like with Willian with these two goals and every piece of football he did in the game was amazing. We fought and we played some very good football. It is due to the whole team doing an amazing job and I am very happy with it
2019 12 27 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta has said that Chelsea need to rediscover respect from opponents at home after their 2-0 defeat to Southampton on Boxing Day] We haven’t managed to score or win in the last couple of home games, and it’s a big issue if we want to keep the consistency and stay where we want to be. The fans want us to perform and get results and we are not giving them that. It’s true at home we face teams who sometimes sit back more than when they play at home and we can find more space. But it’s up to us to find a way. In the first half we shot once on target. In the second half we got the ball in the box, we went past a defender, but we didn’t find the man in the box, or we didn’t create the chance to get a goal. We are putting ourselves in difficulty. It’s up to us to find always the consistency, the level to play home or away, against any team. We know every game in the Premier League is very tough. When teams see you are losing points at home they come with more confidence. We have to recover this respect at home
[Asked about the outlook for a tough couple of fixtures] When you lose a game you want to bounce back as quickly as possible. We have to find a way to do so in two days’ time. We have to react, but I have to be clear, we can’t be the whole season up down, up down. It’s key in the second half of the season we recover our consistency, the solidity at home, and keep growing as a team
2019 12 27b Retrieve
[Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta is worried teams no longer worry about travelling to Stamford Bridge to face his team] It’s true that when teams see we have not won games, they come here with more confidence because they see they can do it. So forget tactics. Everything is about recovering the respect at home, being solid at home, because it is not normal to lose so many games in your stadium. I don’t think the pressure of playing at home should be negative. It should be the opposite. We have the players, we have the quality and we have to turn it around straight away. The lesson has been very harsh – losing three [recent] games and scoring zero goals
It’s difficult to understand why this is happening. Normally at home you find teams a bit more defensive, we can enjoy more time on the ball and you can create more chances. It’s up to us. When you play at home it is not about the rival, it is about yourself – about moving the ball quick to find the spaces, to create chances and give the fans and ourselves a lift
2020 01 02 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta has called for patience with Chelsea’s young forward line after they failed to kill off a game at Brighton which ended in a 1-1 draw] Well, we have had ups and downs. We have had an amazing run of games where we were winning. Then in the last few games we haven’t found consistency and lost a lot of points, especially at home. That is something we are trying to improve on as quickly as possible because to be at the top; we need to find consistency at home. We need to be solid again and to recover our home form because we know every game is difficult but we know with our position that it is in our hands.
We have it in our hands. We are in fourth position and if we do our job, then we will finish in the top four. It is up to us; we know that we have a lot of games. We know that for the second part of the season we have the FA Cup and Champions League coming in. When we were winning back-to-back, we were winning as a team. Now we don’t win; it is up to us. We work together to try to get it because we cannot forget that we have young players around, but we are Chelsea.
Every time we go to the pitch, we go to win. In every game, we show that we want to win. It is true that sometimes we are not at our level but it is up to us to raise it to get to where we want to be. We cannot forget where most of them were last season. They were playing in different environments and circumstances. It is their first year in the Premier League and they are doing amazingly well, it is part of the process and we need to keep it all together. We are very happy that after the hard work from the academy coaches and staff that these young lads have their opportunities. Some are coming back from loans; some are from the academy and directly now with us. It is part of their progress and I am sure that they will keep us growing as a team
Sometimes through games, you have better periods than in others so when you are on top of them you have to try to make the most of it and it is not the first time it happens that we are better than them and we don’t put the game to bed. At 1-0, you risk it. Today we were punished in the second half. We started very well. We controlled the game. We scored the first one and we could have killed the game in the first 45 minutes we were much better than them but we were not able to do it. Then, we lost a bit of control and Kepa made good saves to get at least a point from the game.
When you don’t win, it is always bad. At Chelsea, we fight every time to win the games. When we don’t win we are not happy and we came here to get back-to-back wins in the Premier League which we haven’t done in a while and we were not able to start the year in a good position
2020 01 14 Retrieve
[Azpilicueta talks about what it means to represent the club] I think one of the characteristics of Chelsea throughout this period has been winning trophies and even when we didn’t win something, we didn’t have any long spells without lifting a trophy. That’s obviously a big part of the ambition of the club, to always aim for trophies, and it’s something we have done not only in England, but also in Europe, with the Champions League and the Europa League twice. We have won the Premier League a couple of times since I arrived as well, so I think it’s in our DNA that we always fight for trophies and hopefully we can keep going in this direction
2020 01 25 Retrieve
[Azpilicueta admits Chelsea ‘have to improve’ after surviving FA Cup scare at Hull City] We have to improve our game if we want to improve as a team and go far. It is not the first game where we don’t manage the game well. We were punished. First half the first chance we have, we score and we have chances to score more but we stopped playing our game. If we want to play against the best and fight for trophies we need to improve. We are a team and the season is long. We are fighting in three competitions. Our objective is to go as far as possible. It is our job to be in the best shape possible
2020 02 10 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta admits Chelsea have to be stronger at Stamford Bridge] We haven’t made Stamford Bridge as solid as we would like this year. This is the best time to recover this solidity, with three big games in a row at home where we can show we are ready and able to make Stamford Bridge a tough place to come. With the fans we have had some disappointments at home altogether. When these three opportunities come we have to take them one by one, and hopefully we can build up on this. It’s key for the success of the season
I have improved at my movement attacking set-plays. For most of my career I was not going up for attacking set-plays, but a few years ago I started, and then you improve. At training I work on my movements, getting in to the right spaces. I have a determination as well. To be hungry is very important, because I’m not the tallest. I’m pleased to score goals, even if it’s not my main job
2020 02 22 Retrieve
[Cesar Azpilicueta on Chelsea XI] We have a squad and we need to be ready for every game. It’s true that, when you don’t play, it difficult. Everybody wants to help the team. But everybody keeps training hard, fighting to be in the team. The competition is what gives the team that extra per cent where everybody can push to the limit. Today it worked perfectly
[Azpilicueta was involved in one of the game’s flashpoints as Giovani Lo Celso appeared to stamp on the his legs in an awful late challenge] I’m not a player that likes to be on the floor, because I’m a defender, I’m tough, and I make fouls. But it was not a normal foul. It was a clear stamp on my shin. I felt it straight away and I was surprised that it was not a red card and not even a yellow card. Obviously everybody can make mistakes, but when you have a lot of replays, I think it could be easier
2020 02 23 Retrieve
[Captain Cesar Azpilicueta was also delighted to see Giroud hit form] We are a squad. We need to be ready for every game. It’s difficult when you don’t play, everybody wants to help the team, everybody keeps training hard and fighting to be in the team. The competition is what gives the team that extra per cent where everybody can push to the limit
2020 05 21 Retrieve
[Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta opens up on esports venture] It ticks so many boxes for me. I didn’t want to make this something with footballers, because in the end the esports industry has other big teams not related to football.
There is nothing guaranteed when you make investments. This is an adventure and there is risk with everything. It is more about the project and we got the people we wanted, which was very important.
We have a great structure where there are people working behind the scenes on everything, so that our players feel like they have people working for them, too. There is a manager, people working on social media, on Twitch, on content. It is far more than just having a player sitting behind a TV trying to win a game
For me it is very important the team has the aim to keep getting the club higher and higher [in the rankings], and to keep improving. Now it’s up to them to perform
2020 06 02 Retrieve
[Chelsea have followed Liverpool’s lead in making a stand against racism by creating a symbol in training to support the Black Lives Matter movement] We have seen recently the result of racism and we see every day that that kind of hate has to be eradicated from society, and we have to play our part. There is every day the possibility to lead by example, to behave, to educate the children into a better world because we know that education is key for the future. We know the young generation is coming behind us and we want to leave them in a better world with more possibilities without any kind of discrimination or racism, so everything matters and it is time to speak up and to face up to the attitudes that we are seeing. There is no place for all of this. Chelsea is a club that leads by example, always on the front foot in tackling racism and all kinds of discrimination. We are very proud to be part of Chelsea and to take action when we participate in any campaigns. You want to try to help in the way we can. It is part of our values and we take it very seriously. We see many incidents of discrimination in every part of the world and it shouldn’t happen. We are all equal and it doesn’t matter our origin, the colour of our skin, our religion, our sexuality, we are all human. To have the same opportunities and respect for each other is the key, next to education, to see all people as other human beings and not to discriminate. It is important to respect each other and to learn from each other. We come from different backgrounds but we can all appreciate each other and get love from each other, and in the end have a better path for the world