The blues haven’t always been known for giving youngsters a chance but with a talented crop of home-grown players making a statement Mourinho has promised to give them an opportunity in the first team within the coming years having stated- “I want it (to give them a chance) in the right time. I don’t want them to come and not to succeed.”
Here we take a look at some of these promising young talents:
Nathaniel Chalobah, defender/midfielder (19)
Chalobah has been rated highly at Chelsea for a couple of years now after impressive loan spells at Watford and Middlesbrough in the Championship. His preferred position is midfield but can also fit in comfortably in a defensive role. His main qualities would be his comfort and calmness on the ball as well as his skill, which saw him compared to Ronaldinho as a young kid. In addition he can tackle well and pick out a pass, so watch out for this talent who is at the front of queue to the Chelsea first team having been banging on the door for quite a while now.
Patrick Bamford, forward (20)
Every team need someone to stick the ball in the back of the net regularly and Bamford will certainly provide this. A modern day goal poacher who had a spectacular campaign last year at first MK Dons and then Derby a division up, as his goal scoring exploits saw him rise to prominence. However don’t think he is just a poacher, as he can score all types of goals from any angle or distance and his approach play is impressive. There had been rumours that Mourinho wished to use Bamford as his 3rd choice striker this season but apparently he has had a change of heart, deciding that a loan move would be more beneficial for the 20 year old.
Lewis Baker, midfielder (19)
Chelsea’s young player of the season for the 2013/14 campaign was outstanding all year round as his passing, assists and goals fired his side to the crown of U21 Premier League champions. What’s more he was handed his first team debut in the FA Cup against Derby as a substitute, with Mourinho supposedly a big fan of Baker, who also scored the winner and put in a man of the match display against Manchester United in the U21 final at Old Trafford. With the arrival of Cesc Fabregas this summer, Baker looks set to stay in the youth set-up for now but if he keeps up last year’s form, there is no way Jose can ignore him.
Josh McEachran, midfielder (21)
Having seemingly broken into the first team under Carlo Ancelotti in 2010, McEachran has become somewhat of a forgotten man at Stamford Bridge in the wake of the Italian’s departure. Undoubtedly a victim of Chelsea’s hire and fire approach, the England U21 international has since had loan spells at Swansea, Middlesbrough, Watford and Wigan before recently joining Vitesse Arnhem for the season this time round. By the time he returns he will have turned 22 so a big career decision will have to be made on whether he stays or look for pastures new. However a good year in Holland may well see him have a future at his boyhood club. His dream isn’t over just yet!
Izzy Jay Brown, midfielder/forward (17)
Brown is not a home grown Chelsea player having been poached from West Brom at the age of 16 having become the second youngest player to appear in the Premier League when he came on for the Baggies in defeat against Wigan Athletic. Since then he has enhanced his reputation as a hot prospect by impressing for the blues academy before speer-heading the England U17’s European Championship triumph in Malta earlier this summer. Recently Mourinho noted him out at as a special talent but a couple of years in the academy may not hurt Brown as he still has age on his side being only 17.
Dominic Solanke, forward (16)
The young striker has been at Chelsea from U9 level and has also been singled out by Mourinho as a future star. Like Izzy Brown he was also at the heart of England U17 Euro glory as he scored in the semi-final and final against Portugal and then Holland. Solanke is technically very good and can link play well, in addition he possesses raw pace and is cool in front of goal making him a real handful. Another player that may have to wait a while for his breakthrough but he certainly looks like another gem.
George Saville, midfielder (21)
Another player that needs to break through within the next couple of years if he is to stay at Chelsea you feel, Saville is a steady player that build attacks and can win the ball back as well as having an eye for a spectacular goal. He enjoyed a good loan spell at Brentford last year as the Bees won promotion to the Championship, with him at the heart of the team. That coming on the back of a short spell at Millwall.