Golden Ball winner of 2023 Fifa U20 World Cup joins Chelsea

Posted : 01 February 2024

Chelsea, a Premier League club, has officially announced on their website that Cesare Casadei, the winner of the 2023 FIFA U20 World Cup Golden Ball, will be sporting the number 31 jersey for the remainder of the 2023-2024 season.

Casadei, an Italy U21 international, spent the initial part of the season with Leicester City in the Championship. After an impressive stint with 25 appearances, three goals, and two assists, he was recalled by Chelsea in January.

Making his Chelsea debut against Liverpool, Casadei proudly wore the number 31 jersey. This coveted number was previously worn by England U21 international Noni Madueke during the second half of the 2022-2023 season.

Notably, Chelsea's number 31 jersey holds historical significance, as it was once donned by George Weah, the only African player to win the Ballon d'Or, during his loan spell in the latter part of the 1999-2000 season.

Past players who have graced the number 31 for Chelsea include Fikayo Tomori, Malang Sarr, Nathan Baxter, Jamie Cumming, Rob Green, Andreas Christensen, Filipe Oliveira, Marco Ambrosio, and Mark Bosnich.

Madueke, of Anglo-Nigerian descent, opted for Chelsea's number 11 shirt at the beginning of the 2023-2024 season. He recently made a rare start for the team in a match against Liverpool, ending in a 4-1 defeat at Anfield.



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