Former England centre-back Gary Cahill has joined Crystal Palace on a two-year deal.
The hugely experienced and decorated 33-year-old departed Chelsea this summer after seven and a half seasons with the Blues – winning almost everything there is to win in the club game: including the Champions League in his first season, two Premier League titles, two Europa League cups, two FA Cups and a League Cup.
Cahill was born in Dronfield, Derbyshire, and began his professional career with Aston Villa. However, his first professional game was a decade and a half ago for Championship side Burnley, having been loaned out by Villa. His first England appearance came in 2010 against Bulgaria, and he would go on to be given the captaincy five times for his country – the first of which was in 2015 under Roy Hodgson. He joined Bolton Wanderers in 2008, before making the switch to Chelsea in 2012 where he played a key role in a hugely successful period for the west London side.
With 61 England caps and 516 club games to his name – including 349 Premier League appearances, Cahill brings a wealth of experience to south London and said upon signing: "I’m glad to be here, I think it’s a good opportunity for me to continue my career in the Premier League, and to play in a good, exciting team. There are some very exciting, talented players here. I’m looking forward to the challenge."
Cahill was unveiled by the club wearing the hugely anticipated new third kit, which features a modern interpretation of the famous Palace sash. He added: “I’m hungry to prolong my career as long as I possibly can – I feel like I’m in great shape and whoever I play for, I’d like to think that I give it 110% and leave everything out there - so hopefully that will be good enough for the manager, my team-mates and also the fans.”
Commenting on the club's third signing of the window, chairman Steve Parish said: "Gary is an exceptional professional and a fine addition to our squad. Adding a former England captain and a proven winner at the highest possible level to our ranks will definitely boost everyone at the club and add greater depth to our talented squad. I'm sure that Gary will also provide great leadership within Roy’s squad as we prepare for another competitive season in the top flight."
Roy Hodgson added: “I’m delighted that Gary has joined us. He’s a fantastic footballer who brings a wealth of international and Premier League experience. Having worked alongside Gary during my time as England manager, I know that he is going to be a valuable asset and I’m so happy to be working with him again.”
Watch Gary’s first interview as a Palace player soon on Palace TV for free at eagles.cpfc.co.uk or on the official Palace app.
Pre-order the new third kit - "The Modern Sash" - now, for delivery in mid-September 2019.