Former Sheffield Wednesday loan player Michael Hector has told Berkshire Live how he rejected a move to Crystal Palace and instead signed for Chelsea back in 2015.
The current Fulham defender broke through the ranks at Reading.
His impressive campaign in the 2014/15 season prompted Premier League interest, with Crystal Palace agreeing a deal with the Royals for his signature.
A move to the Eagles, however, never materialised.
Speaking to reporters, Hector admits he was set to join Palace but a late bid from boyhood club Chelsea saw him reject the Eagles for a move to Stamford Bridge instead.
“I was meant to go to Crystal Palace at the start of the transfer window. But my Dad said on deadline day: You might not be signing for Palace, there’s another team [interested]. I’m a Chelsea fan so I said ‘Chelsea?’ and he said yes. He said Chelsea were on the phone, they wanted to do a deal. Then we drove to Stamford Bridge, did the deal, had the medical the next day. Then Palace boss (Alan Pardew) took it very well, but he was angry at the same time. He was telling me I was going to play if I went there but I told him Chelsea were the team I supported growing up, I couldn’t turn the move down, no chance,” Hector explained.
Hector failed to make an appearance for Chelsea, and instead spent the following seasons out on loan at the likes of Eintracht Frankfurt, Hull City and Wednesday.
He joined the Owls for the 2018-19 campaign, making 37 Championship appearances.
Wednesday were delighted with his loan spell, and later tried signing the central defender in the summer of 2019 with the Star claiming the Owls couldn’t afford his £5 million fee.
According to Geoff Peters, the Owls tried again for Hector last summer, making a bid for him. However, they again missed out with Aden Flint joining on loan.
Hector, 28, has barely featured for Fulham this season. He hasn’t played in the Premier League since December, with his last game coming in the 3-0 FA Cup defeat to Burnley.