Chelsea’s record 16 debutants in 2022/23

From the official Chelsea FC website:

Our 2022/23 campaign has set a new all-time club record, which had stood since way back in 1909, after Enzo Fernandez and Noni Madueke took the number of players making their Chelsea debut to 16 when they took to the pitch for the first time in a Blues shirt against Fulham on Friday.

The only time the Blues have had more players making their first appearance for the club in the same season was when we embarked on our maiden campaign, with every player who featured during 1905/06 obviously making their competitive debut for the fledgling Chelsea team. Current records have that number down as 28.

Excluding the statistical anomaly of that first-ever Chelsea campaign, the highest number of Blues debuts in a single season had been 15, which was first achieved way back in 1909/10 and repeated more recently in 2017/18.

However, with a number of new signings joining the Blues for the current season, plus a couple of Academy graduates making the step up for their first senior appearance, that 113-year-old club record has now been surpassed.

Here are the details of all 16 of those Chelsea debuts this season…

Noni Madueke

Chelsea 0-0 Fulham, Premier League, 3 February 2023

The most recent Chelsea debut was that of Noni Madueke, who came off the bench to replace fellow January signing Mykhailo Mudryk at half-time in Friday’s draw with Fulham at Stamford Bridge. The England Under-21 winger moved to west London from PSV Eindhoven during the transfer window and showed some promising signs as he was eased into Premier League action by Graham Potter.

Total appearances: 1

Enzo Fernandez

Chelsea 0-0 Fulham, Premier League, 3 February 2023

Madueke wasn’t the only player making his Chelsea debut on Friday evening, with Enzo Fernandez doing so from the start just days after joining the Blues from Benfica. The midfielder, who won the World Cup with Argentina in December, looked tidy throughout and wasn’t far away from breaking the deadlock in this west-London derby with a lovely curling effort from outside the box.

Total appearances: 1


Mykhailo Mudryk

Liverpool 0-0 Chelsea, Premier League, 21 January 2023

Mykhailo Mudryk has been playing catch-up after moving to England in the middle of the Premier League season, having not played since the end of the Ukrainian season in November, but that didn’t stop him impressing on his Chelsea debut at Anfield. The winger came on in the second half and caused Liverpool plenty of problems with his pace and skill, looking the most likely to create the game’s first goal, before making his full debut at Stamford Bridge against Fulham at the end of last week.

Total appearances: 2

Chelsea 1-0 Crystal Palace, Premier League, 15 January 2023

January signing Benoit Badiashile had to be patient for his debut, being an unused substitute twice before Potter included the centre-back in his starting line-up for the visit of Crystal Palace to Stamford Bridge, slotting into our defence alongside Thiago Silva and Trevoh Chalobah. It was a solid start for the Frenchman as we secured the three points against our fellow Londoners and he has played every minute since, with Chelsea keeping a clean sheet in all three of his games so far.

Total appearances: 3

Joao Felix

Fulham 2-1 Chelsea, Premier League, 12 January 2023

Joao Felix’s Chelsea debut didn’t end the way he wanted, as he was shown a red card for a high tackle on Kenny Tete, having been the subject of some pretty rough treatment himself as Fulham struggled to handle the Portuguese forward. However, it seemed more down to his desire to impress on his debut than any malice, and was indicative of his buzzing performance at Craven Cottage. He looked like our biggest attacking threat throughout his 58 minutes of action in a Blues shirt, and is now eligible to return after serving his three-game ban.

Total appearances: 1

David Fofana

Manchester City 4-0 Chelsea, FA Cup, 8 January 2023

Young striker David Fofana is another who has been eased into the action by Potter after arriving at Chelsea in January, having previously been on his close-season break after winning the Norwegian title with Molde. He got his first taste of English football as a half-time substitute away at Manchester City in the FA Cup before his Premier League debut arrived from the bench at Stamford Bridge against Fulham, when he was desperately close to giving us the lead with what would have been a brilliant first Chelsea goal, but saw his shot cleared off the line after taking on and beating the goalkeeper and a defender.

Total appearances: 2

Bashir Humphreys

Manchester City 4-0 Chelsea, FA Cup, 8 January 2023

Having impressed for our Academy, teenage defender Bashir Humphreys was handed his senior debut by Potter from the start, playing the full 90 minutes when we travelled to the Etihad Stadium in the FA Cup last month. He was also named among the Chelsea substitutes on a further four occasions before moving on loan to German side Paderborn in January, where he made his league debut in a 4-1 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf on Friday.

Total appearances: 1

Omari Hutchinson

Chelsea 0-1 Manchester City, Premier League, 5 January 2023

Another teenager making his Chelsea debut in January was Jamaican international Omari Hutchinson, who joined the Blues from Arsenal last summer. The first of his two senior Chelsea appearances, both from the bench against Manchester City, came at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League, before he came on again at the Etihad Stadium in the FA Cup three days later.

Total appearances: 2

Denis Zakaria

Chelsea 2-1 Dinamo Zagreb, Champions League, 2 November 2022

Having waited patiently, being an unused substitute nine times, Denis Zakaria had a debut to remember as he was included in Potter’s starting line-up for Dinamo Zagreb’s visit to Stamford Bridge in the Champions League group stage. The Swiss midfielder starred throughout and scored the decisive goal from the edge of the box as we came from behind to win. Zakaria has grown into life at Chelsea since, with six of his seven appearances under Potter coming from the start, and he was one of our best performers following the World Cup break, until being ruled out by an injury suffered in the league game away at Fulham.

Total appearances: 7


Carney Chukwuemeka

Chelsea 3-0 Wolverhampton Wanderers, Premier League, 8 October 2022

Yet another teenager to make his Chelsea debut in 2022/23, Carney Chukwuemeka was given his introduction as a late substitute in a comfortable win over Wolves, following his summer move from Aston Villa to Stamford Bridge. He has made a further seven appearances from the bench since, as well as being given his first start in the 1-0 home win over Crystal Palace in the Premier League last month.

Total appearances: 9


Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Dinamo Zagreb 1-0 Chelsea, Champions League, 6 September 2022

It wasn’t an easy start to life with Chelsea for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, as his first game for the club was also Thomas Tuchel’s last as head coach, a frustrating defeat away to Dinamo Zagreb in the our opening Champions League group game, during which he was forced to wear a protective mask due to a fractured jaw suffered shortly before joining the club. However, he enjoyed a happier time on his Premier League debut, netting our equaliser as we came back to win 2-1 away at Crystal Palace, and followed it up with further goals in his next two games, home and away against his former club AC Milan.

Total appearances: 17


Wesley Fofana

Chelsea 2-1 West Ham United, Premier League, 3 September 2022

Wesley Fofana made a winning start to his Chelsea career when we hosted West Ham at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League, shortly after he completed his move to west London from Leicester City. It was the first of four matches for the Blues, all of them starts and three of them victories, before he was ruled out by an injury suffered in the 3-0 home win over AC Milan in the Champions League, being forced off 14 minutes after he had opened the scoring with his first goal for Chelsea.

Total appearances: 4

Kalidou Koulibaly

Everton 0-1 Chelsea, Premier League, 6 August 2022

Centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly could be pleased with his day’s work as he helped us to a victory and a clean sheet on his Chelsea debut, away at Everton on the opening day of the Premier League season. He was one of four debutants for the Blues in that match, but the only one making his first appearance in the English top flight, having completed a summer transfer from Napoli. Even better was to follow, as he netted his first goal for the Blues on his home debut the following week, volleying in the opener in a 2-2 derby draw with Tottenham.

Total appearances: 20


Raheem Sterling

Everton 0-1 Chelsea, Premier League, 6 August 2022

Arguably our most exciting signing of the summer was the arrival of England international and four-time Premier League champion Raheem Sterling from Manchester City. The forward made his Chelsea debut in our first match of the season at Everton, just a short walk from the stadium where his senior career began with Liverpool, and thought he had a debut goal to his name, only for it to be ruled out for offside. His first goals did arrive before the end of August, in the form of a brace to give us a 2-1 home win over Leicester, and Sterling has featured regularly in the Blues’ attack ever since.

Total appearances: 23


Marc Cucurella

Everton 0-1 Chelsea, Premier League, 6 August 2022

In addition to Koulibaly and Sterling in the starting line-up, there were two further players making their Chelsea debuts from the bench at Everton. The first of those was Marc Cucurella, who replaced fellow debutant Koulibaly with 75 minutes played at Goodison Park, following the Spaniard’s transfer from Brighton. It was also the first of 10 clean sheets the versatile defender has helped us keep in his 24 games for Chelsea so far, 19 of which have come from the start.

Total appearances: 24


Conor Gallagher

Everton 0-1 Chelsea, Premier League, 6 August 2022

The fourth and final player making his debut at Everton on the opening day of the 2022/23 season was also the odd one out, with Conor Gallagher to only person doing so after coming through our Academy, the other three all being summer transfer signings. It has been a busy start to life with Chelsea’s senior side for Gallagher, as only Mason Mount and Kai Havertz making more than his 26 appearances this season, although 14 of those have come from the bench. His first goal was our late winner against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, where he had been so impressive on loan last season.

Total appearances: 26





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