DANNY DRINKWATER says he is still “angry” after wasting his best years at Chelsea. The 32-year-old joined the Blues back in 2017 for £35m after
DANNY DRINKWATER says he is still “angry” after wasting his best years at Chelsea.
The 32-year-old joined the Blues back in 2017 for £35m after starring in Leicester’s Premier League triumph and Champions League campaign.
LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 01: Danny Drinkwater of Chelsea during Arsenal v Chelsea: The Mind Series at Emirates Stadium on August 1, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)[/caption]
File photo dated 10-01-2018 of Chelsea’s Danny Drinkwater. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday April 9, 2019. Chelsea midfielder Danny Drinkwater has been charged with drink-driving after a car crash. See PA story SOCCER Drinkwater. Photo credit should read Adam Davy/PA Wire.[/caption]
But over the course of his five-year contract, the midfielder made just 23 appearances, scoring once, and has finally been released by the club.
Drinkwater admits his mental health plummeted after being made to feel unwanted at Chelsea, while family bereavements saw him caught drink driving.
Now a free agent, he said: “I’m relieved, because it’s clear it wasn’t a situation that was good for me or the club.
“I’m angry because of how it’s gone and how I was treated. Not bitter though, or what ifs. It was a long time coming.”
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Asked if he had wasted the best five years if his career, he added: “Yeah, it feels like ‘what have you thrown those five years away for?’
“If you’d stayed at Leicester, if you didn’t get injured and if the club treated you differently. They’re all ifs. It’s frustrating, 100 per cent.
“Don’t think I’m still not burning about how it’s gone. I still kick myself for it. But on the other side, am I going to keep kicking myself, because I can’t change it.”
Drinkwater had loan spells at Aston Villa, Burnley, Reading and Turkish side Kasimpasa during his time at Chelsea, but was accused of living an easy life.
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In 2019, he received a 20-month driving ban following a crash near his home while being two-and-a-half times over the legal limit.
But on accusations of an easy life, Drinkwater argued: “That’s not true. ‘Living the life’ lasts about two weeks.
“I was loving it, but in the background, there’s always things that burn away. And as a person, if you’re not open enough to speak to the right people, it chews away at you.
“I was. Nan passed, grandad passed, dad got diagnosed with Leukaemia, I lost my dog and was drink driving, which is just not me. I made a big mistake.
“I was also fighting for my son, which was going on constantly and takes its toll. I definitely think that’s the lowest I’d been. I didn’t think I was depressed, but it could’ve gone that way.”
Asked where he will be playing next season, he said: “There are a few offers flying about. I’ve still got the ability and hunger to push myself.”