Thiago Silva makes heartfelt Chelsea speech in front of record-breaking crowd on Brazil return

Brazilian defender Thiago Silva speaks to supporters during his presentation as new player of Fluminense at Maracana Stadium on June 07, 2024 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
-Credit: (Image: Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

Thiago Silva was given a massive welcome home from Fluminense supporters as his return to the Brazilian club was announced at the Maracanã Stadium this weekend.

The 39-year-old has left Chelsea after a legendary four-year stint that saw him help the Blues win the Champions League, UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup as well as secure European football under Mauricio Pochettino during his final season at the club.

It was announced last month that the star would be leaving the Blues at the end of the season and returning to Fluminense, the last Brazilian club he played for before making the trip to Europe to play for AC Milan in 2009. In a video released by the club, Silva delivered a message to the supporters, thanking them for the last few years.

"Chelsea means a lot to me. I came here with the intention of only staying for a year and it ended up being four years. Not just for me but for my family, too.

"My sons play for Chelsea so it is a source of great pride to be a part of the Chelsea family – literally because my sons are here. I hope they continue their careers here at this victorious club that many players wish to be part of.

"[It’s been a] dream, definitely a dream. Not even in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I could achieve such great things and win one of the best professional titles, the Champions League, at one of the biggest clubs in the world. Goodbyes are for those that leave and don’t come back. I intend on coming back one day..."

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Since then, the Blues have appointed ex-Leicester manager Enzo Maresca and have already secured someone to try and fill the inevitable void that Silva's departure will have left. Former Fulham centre-back Tosin Adarabioyo arrived on a four-year deal after his Fulham contract expired at the end of the 2023/24 season.

Despite Silva still technically being contracted to Chelsea until the end of the month, the club allowed him to return to Fluminense early out of respect for what he bought to the Blues in recent years and Silva thanked the club in his speech he made last night in front of 55 thousand supporters - the biggest attendance for a player presentation in Brazilian football history.

"Good evening Maracanã," he began. "Firstly, I would like to thank God for giving me another opportunity to wear this important shirt. I feel very proud that for a second time, I get to put on this shirt.

"Secondly, I would like to thank my family for always being there, my family is the most important thing that I have in my life. I know that being away from them won’t be easy but our hearts will always be connected.

"Because those that love, will always take good care of what they have. Despite all the distance, we will always make the effort to be together. I would like to thank Chelsea Football Club for giving me the incredible opportunity to be here and wear this shirt again.

"As you all know, my contract with Chelsea runs until June 30 and they didn’t deny me the opportunity to be here for the unveiling tonight. I would like to thank the president Mario, for all the effort and for never giving up in our dreams.

"Today, our dream becomes reality, to work together for Fluminense, which is the club we love the most in this world. Thank you all for being here in this special night. I’m back, the monster is back."