Malouda happy to take charge
Florent Malouda is relishing the responsibility boss Carlo Ancelotti has allowed him at Stamford Bridge.
Last Updated: 15/05/10 10:30am
Chelsea midfielder Florent Malouda is relishing the responsibility boss Carlo Ancelotti has allowed him at Stamford Bridge.
The 29-year-old, who joined the Blues from Lyon for £13.5million in 2007, told manager Ancelotti he wanted to be a leader, not a follower when he first arrived at the club.
And despite the commanding presence of players such as John Terry, Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba, the Chelsea boss allowed Malouda his freedom.
The Frenchman has since blossomed for the Blues, scoring 15 goals this season to help them to their first league title in four years.
Malouda is now welcoming the pressure of being on the edge of the club's first double as they prepare to take on Portsmouth in the FA Cup final on Saturday, and he is hoping he can carry his glittering form into the World Cup for France next month.
"When you are new at a club you don't really take responsibility, you just follow," Malouda told the Daily Express.
"But I wanted to become a leader like I was at my previous club Lyon. So I talked to the manager and told him that is what I want to do at Chelsea.
"It is not difficult because, although there are big characters here, there are also a lot of intelligent players. You need a good mixture so that everyone brings his character into the team, but not the bad side of the ego.
"I have my character but must understand others as well."
Malouda admits this term has been his best at Stamford Bridge after enduring a frustrating first two seasons, which he puts down to injuries and fitness, as well as simply needing time to settle.
"This has been my best season, not only in England but of my entire career," He added.
"But it has not finished yet and we have the opportunity to make history now.
"There were reasons why it took me some time. It was not only my performance, but Chelsea's. There were a lot of changes at the club. I was new and I needed time.
"But I never lost my confidence. When I started this season, I was really sure I could prove to everyone that the club was right to buy me.
"The pressure we have had from the beginning of the season has been really intense but I have been ready for it. I have really enjoyed the big moments of hard pressure. I took responsibility. Maybe that has been the difference."