In recent years Chelsea have been London's most successful club, and they have had success in a variety of different competitions since the Premier League was launched in 1992. The Blues also became the first club from London to be crowned European champions in 2012, after defeating Bayern Munich on penalties. For fans of Premier League football, Chelsea FC tickets are among the most prized - despite the Blues poor start to the 2015-16 season.
Established in 1905, Chelsea played their first matches at Stamford Bridge, which remains the Londoners home ground to this day. Success was almost immediate for the club, as they gained promotion to the First Division just two years after being founded. In 1915 Chelsea reached their first FA Cup final, and the club's rapid rise continued, when five years later the Blues finished third in the First Division - their best finish yet.
After some lean years, former Arsenal legend Ted Drake took over as manager in the 1950s, and in 1955 they became First Division champions for the first time. Unfortunately for the Blues they were unable to build on this success until, in the mid 1960s, they began challenging for honours again with an exciting young side. The Blues won the League Cup for the first time in 1965, but they had to wait until 1970 before winning another major trophy, when they defeated Leeds in a bruising encounter in an FA Cup final replay at Old Trafford.
Alan Hudson and Peter Osgood were two of the star performers for Chelsea in the early 1970s, and 1971 saw the Blues win their first major European trophy, after they defeated Real Madrid 2-1 in the Cup Winners' Cup final. Again, though, Chelsea went many years without winning a major trophy, until Ruud Gullit's appointment in the mid-1990s.
In 1997 and 2000 Chelsea won the FA Cup. The Blues also won the League Cup in 1998, and the Cup Winners' Cup the same year. Then, following Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich becoming Chelsea's new owner, together with the charismatic Jose Mourinho taking over as manager, Chelsea began the greatest period in their history.
Chelsea won the League title for a second time in 2005, and then retained the title. Despite Mourinho leaving the club in 2007, Chelsea's success continued, and they were to win the League title for a fourth time in 2010. The Blues won the FA Cup at regular intervals, 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2012 and were League Cup winners in 2005 and 2007. Chelsea also reached their first Champions League final in 2008. During the Premier League era, outstanding Chelsea players have included Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard, John Terry and Gianfranco Zola.