Courtois sends message to Chelsea fans as he explains his departure ahead of facing Chelsea for the first time

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Former Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois have been afforded the opportunity to come against his former side for the first time since leaving the club in 2018.

The highly-rated Belgian goalkeeper was seen as a long-term replacement for Petr Cech, but he angered fans of the club when he decided to leave for Real Madrid, and the manner in which he sought an exit pained the Blues fans the more.

Courtois won two Premier League titles with Chelsea before sealing a move to Real Madrid, and Chelsea fans had since given him the nickname ‘snake’.

Despite the anger from fans, Courtois is pleased with the opportunity to return to Stamford Bridge and has revealed that he has pleasant memories from his time at Chelsea.

Reflecting on his departure ahead of his Chelsea reunion, Courtois BeIN Sports: “It will be very nice to see a lot of familiar faces and I wish there was public at Stamford Bridge because there was a lot of happy moments I had there.

“Even though maybe my departure wasn’t in the best way, or it was put that way, that it wasn’t the best way, I only have good memories.

“Two Premier Leagues, a lot of other trophies – I’m really happy to play them, but only one can be in the final and I hope it’s Real Madrid.”

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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.