The London Evening Standard says the former West Ham midfielder has the medals to prove he was worth keeping, having played more than a helping hand in the club's capture of three titles, three FA and two Carling Cups since 2005.
It seems Chelsea will now look to the erratic Salomon Kalou and the inexperienced youngster Gael Kakuta to provide the flair when they resume their bid to win silverware next term. No wonder there has been such a furious response on Chelsea messageboards across the web.
More than anyone else in the blue ranks, he was a player that the fans could all identify with. A self-confessed supporter while he was growing up, he also spent time in his youth as a Chelsea ball-boy - long before Roman Abramovich's Russian billions arrived on the scene.
All he ever talked about was his love of Chelsea and a desire to see out his career in south west London, however, his wage demands have been used as an excuse for his departure.
In truth, the schism began because he no longer felt valued by coach Carlo Ancelotti, who only used him as bit-part player following his recovery from a serious knee injury.