How Marina won back the hearts of Chelsea fans

Photo: Catherine Ivill – AMA/Getty Images

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Marina Granovskaia has seen the hate and love from Chelsea fans, but the Chelsea chief will be pleased with how she has won the hearts of the fans at the club.

Marina has spent the past 18 years working alongside Roman Abramovich in various roles but moved to London shortly after he bought Chelsea in 2003, and currently serves as director of the club.

She has had to win her respect not only among the board members, but among staff and the Chelsea fans world over.

Granovskaia’s job at Chelsea has been one of slow but steady progress over the years and she worked closely with technical director Michael Emenalo to help shape the club’s academy, as well as the loan department. She has also helped strengthen Chelsea’s link with Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem, where Chelsea send so many players for first-team experience.

Marina has gained a notorious prestige as one of the most impressive, fearless and successful negotiators in the transfer business. She doesn’t only work hard to get good deals for the club, but the Blues also find a way to sell players far above the right price. A worthy example is the sale of Eden Hazard to Real Madrid for over £100m despite having just a year left on his contract.

At the time when Michael Emenalo left the club, after a good work beside Marina, not many could see the quality of the powers that be at the club.

With Chelsea having been hit with a transfer ban, the decision to let Maurizio Sarri leave and get paid in return as well as hire Frank Lampard, was a brilliant one. Lampard would eventually create a pathway for academy players, something that the owner of the club has since been yearning for, after much investments.

Chelsea were hit with a transfer ban, but the Blues held on to prepare for the future, and the financial impact of the coronavirus, has done little to slow Chelsea down.

The Blues have spent close to £250m in the transfer market so far, but the books are quite balanced as Chelsea have pocketed close to £200m from player sales over the past year, with some other sales expected at the club.

The sales of Eden Hazard and David Luiz for £103.5M and £7.8M, as well as Alvaro Morata to Atletico Madrid – £50.40M and Mario Pasalic to Atalanta – £13.50m has given the club enough financial strength. The club is still expected to make a number of sales that would eventually balance the books, meaning Chelsea might not have spent a dime by the time the transfer window is over.

Chelsea fans have now taken to social media to hail Marina Granovskaia, and it’s indeed been a job well done.

About the Author

Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.