Leo Cahill – son of Chelsea defender Gary – swings from the chairs as he, sister Freya and mum Gemma wait in the press lounge at the final whistle after Chelsea’s last home game on Sunday afternoon – a 3-0 win over Watford.
Leo was among a 20-strong gatthering of Wags and children standing by to be called forward to join their fathers on the pitch for the traditional lap of appreciation at Stamford Bridge.
And he’s well used to laps… son sits on dad’s lap when they have their hair cut together in a Cobham barber’s!
All the youngsters were kitted out in new-look Chelsea shirts, featuring a little red stripe running down the back of the neck, and images of the stadium incorporated in the fabric pattern.
It was an important day for Gary. After being overlooked for virtually the entire season by Morrie Sarri – who put his trust in Andreas Christensen, Tony Rudiger and David Luiz as central defenders – he was given a brief cameo (to a standing ovation from the Stamford Bridge crowd) in the 89th minute of the match against Watford when he came on in place of Luiz.
The 6ft 5in defender was cheered when he made a defensive header to clear danger, then bounded upfield in his much-missed lope for three successive Blues corners in stoppage time… desperate to get on the end of one of Eden Hazard’s crosses.
Sadly there was no goal to go out on a high, but his overall tally – 13 goals in 191 appearances for the Blues – makes him one of the greats. As he moves to pastures new this summer, he can reflect on a seven-year Chelsea career which has included winning the Champions League, Europa League, two Premier League titles, an FA Cup and three Community Shields.