Date: 2nd February 2011 at 6:19pm
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Les Stubbs, a member of Chelsea’s first ever league championship winning squad in 1955, passed away yesterday at the age of 81.

An inside forward, his Stamford Bridge career spanned six seasons after signing from Southend in 1952.

He went on to make 123 appearances for the club, scoring 35 times and playing a key role in Chelsea’s maiden league triumph.

Club historian Rick Glanvill described his contribution to the club.

‘Les is often described as the unsung hero of our first great title-winning side, and is certainly not as feted as some others. But having arrived in 1952 and forced his way into Ted Drake’s starting XI, he played 27 times in 1954/55 and scored five goals. Several of those were crucial, including the confidence-boosting winner at Sheffield United in September. But his greatest contribution came away to title rivals Wolves in December.

‘Chelsea went 2-3 down from a disputed penalty with just three minutes remaining. Straight from the kick off Eric Parsons flew down the wing and crossed smartly. It was Les who beat Billy Wright and others to the ball and shot home the vital equaliser.

‘Incredibly, Roy Bentley almost instantly scored the winner in a 4-3 victory that seriously dented Wolves’ confidence. And perhaps in a nutshell that is why Les’ crucial contributions tended to be underplayed.

‘Roy and a few others provided the charisma, but they could not have achieved anything without the consistency of the likes of Les Stubbs.’

Vital Chelsea would like to pass on our sincere condolences to Leslie’s family and friends.