Bates mocked him for joining the club at the start of the Roman Abramovich era in 2003.
He told cfuk magazine: “I rolled in at Chelsea on my first day thinking ‘I’m going to be a big part of this club’.
“Then Sebastian Veron walks through the door with about five agents. Same position as me, costing three or four times as much.
“As soon as I signed, Bates said to me: ‘Congratulations, son, you’ve joined to sit on our bench’.
“I just thought ‘I’ll show you’ and a year later I was playing regularly and Veron was off.”