Cahill hails Chelsea old-guard

Defender learning from veterans at Stamford Bridge

Gary Cahill: Learning plenty from Ashley Cole and other Chelsea veterans

Gary Cahill believes Chelsea's so-called 'old guard' still have plenty to offer - and he is learning under them.

Since his January switch from Bolton, the defender has played his part in helping the Blues to the UEFA Champions League and FA Cup double.

Speculation has been rife all season about a summer clearout of the club's veterans, but Cahill insists the performance of Didier Drogba and fellow thirty-somethings Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole in Saturday's epic victory over Bayern Munich proved they still had plenty to offer - especially to him.

"I don't see it being the end," the England defender said.

"Frank Lampard was fantastic. Ashley Cole was amazing and he's probably been the best left-back in the world for many years.

"Didier, again, turned up, the big man for the big occasion.


"You just learn from these sorts of boys, especially myself.

"Hopefully, I can learn fast."

Cahill admits he felt added pressure on Saturday in the absence of another Chelsea veteran, suspended captain John Terry.

"I felt pressure because, obviously, the skipper wasn't there," said the 26-year-old, who revealed he was not even fully fit after almost a month out with a hamstring injury.

"Because of the size of the game and what it meant to the club - obviously playing the Champions League next season - however much you want to try to play it down in your head and relax, you knew it was a massive, massive game," he added.

"You only get the experience by playing in the games and, now, these games, the Barcelona games, and even coming on in the Benfica game in the second half was a great experience for myself and will only improve me as a player."

Drogba talks

Chelsea are planning 11th-hour talks with China-linked Drogba this week in an attempt to reach an agreement on extending his contract after the club refused to bow to the 34-year-old's demands for a new two-year deal earlier this season.

Cahill added: "If you ask every player at the football club, you'd hope that he stays.

"But he's obviously got his own decision to make.

"It was just fitting that he took the penalty that won us the cup, he got us back in the game late doors.

"He just seems to turn up in these big games and that's the kind of player he is."