Has a Chelsea Player Ever Been Top Goalscorer in the Premier League?

Chelsea have had some truly outstanding strikers over the years. That said, their leading goalscorer is actually an attacking midfielder, with no Blues star bettering Frank Lampard’s tally of 211 career goals for the club.

Lampard was fortunate enough to play for Chelsea during their most successful period. He won three Premier League crowns, four FA Cups, the Europa League and, of course, the Champions League. Given the success the club have enjoyed for much of the Premier League era, one might expect them to have had several winners of the Premier League Golden Boot, the award given to the top scorer in the competition. But is that actually the case? Has a Chelsea player ever been the top goal-getter in the Premier League, or did Frank’s goals from midfield mean that they could achieve so much success despite not having a truly prolific hitman?

Three Chelsea Players Have Won the Golden Boot

Lampard has never ended the PL season as the competition’s top scorer but three other Blues players have. What’s more, one of them has done so twice. Only Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United and Spurs have seen their players win the award more often, with just the two sides from the North West having had more than three different players claim individual glory.

Didier Drogba Does Double

Didier Drogba
rayand | Flickr.com – CC BY 2.0

Few keen Chelsea fans will be surprised to learn that it is the Ivorian powerhouse Didier Drogba who is Chelsea’s duel winner of the Premier League Golden Boot. Drogba was such a key part of the success under Jose Mourinho and beyond and at his best, which he produced often, and when it mattered most, he was unplayable.

He claimed his first success in the 2006/07 season when he bagged 20 goals from 36 games. That is a relatively low total to claim the Golden Boot but it was more than anyone else managed that season. It was not, however, enough for the club to land the league title, even though they had won it in the preceding two seasons.

They fell short of the hat-trick though as, despite amassing 83 points and losing just three times all season, they were beaten into second. Man United won the title with 89 points, Chelsea ultimately drawing too many games (11) to make it three in a row.

They did win the title the second time Drogba landed individual glory though, this happening in the 2009/10 campaign. The world-class striker netted 29 goals in just 32 Premier League games as Chelsea pipped United to the title by a single point. This time around they lost twice as many matches but under the brilliant management of Carlo Ancelotti they played fantastic football, netting a massive 103 goals.

In total Drogba played 381 times for the club, including 40 in a second spell in the 2014/15 season. He scored 164 times for the Pensioners winning the league four times and matching that number of FA Cups. He also helped Chelsea win the Champions League in 2011/12, as well as the League Cup three times.

A true great, he rose to the big occasion. And with goals in four separate FA Cup finals, as well as the equaliser in the Champions League final (plus the winning penalty!), he must go down as one of Chelsea’s all-time heroes.

Floyd First

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink
Oscarfan123 | Wikipedia.org – CC BY-SA 4.0

Drogba may well have landed the Golden Boot twice, but the first Chelsea player to win the award was Dutch striker Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink. Many forget just how good Hasselbaink was and when he won the award with Chelsea in 2000/01, it was actually the second time he had done so.

In 1998/99 he banged in 18 goals for Leeds, which was enough for a tie as top scorer. A few years and a move to Chelsea later he scored 23 in 35 games to win the award outright. The Dutch striker was easily the most prolific in the PL that season too, finishing four clear of Ipswich Town’s Marcus Stewart, who managed 19.

Chelsea finished sixth that season, beneath Ipswich in fact, with Man United, Arsenal and Liverpool making up the top three. Chelsea, in this pre-Roman Abramovich era, were well off the pace, and their total of 61 points was 19 fewer than champions United managed.

Anelka Sandwiched by Drogba!

Nicolas Anelka
Rani777 | Wikipedia.org – CC BY 3.0

The other player to have claimed the Premier League’s Golden Boot is sulky French flyer, Nicolas Anelka. Perhaps surprisingly, he won it in between Drogba’s two Golden Boots, in 2008/09. Chelsea signed the former PSG, Arsenal, Real Madrid and Liverpool player from … Bolton. They paid £15m for him and his career with the club is somewhat hard to summarise.

That said, he managed 59 goals in total, playing 184 times, the 2008/09 campaign being the clear highlight from a personal perspective. He scored 15 goals in total the following season, then 16 after that, but got 19 in the league alone when winning the Golden Boot and 25 in all competitions.

His league strikes came from 36 matches and he was named in the PFA Team of the Year, alongside Liverpool’s Fernando Torres in attack. He was not, however, nominated for the Players’ Player of the Year, despite notching more goals than Cristiano Ronaldo (18) and Steven Gerrard (16), both of those players were put forward for the coveted prize.

Chelsea finished the season down in third, with both Liverpool and Man United above them. It was a campaign of great points accumulation by the top sides, with United getting 90, Liverpool 86 and the Blues 83, a total that has been enough to claim the title in the past. Ultimately Chelsea did not score enough goals though, their total of 68 was unimpressive, even if it did match that of the champions.