It’s easy at times to forget how good Chelsea’s academy is at producing top-end talented footballers.
The Blues have been known over the years for not giving players a chance.
The step from academy football to the first team is a huge one not many could get.
When you are at a club like Chelsea and managers come and go as fast as players do it’s very hard for managers to give academy players a chance, that’s the excuse that’s given anyway.
For many years it was all about John Terry and trying to get a chance as he had.
Since the transfer ban, the chances to the academy graduates started to ramp up which has in turn given the club more money to go
and spend big on quality than spending silly money on backups that the academy players can fill and more if given the chance.
I’ve loved every second of it. I started to lose faith just before Frank Lampard returned but the chances and seeing these lads prove themselves to so many that doubted brings joy to my youth’s enthusiastic look of things.
Trevoh Chalobah looked destined for another loan at one point and many fans wouldn’t have taken much of an interest in his career when he got sent on loan to Ipswich, Huddersfield then Lorient.
He came back with the hunger and belief to impress Thomas Tuchel in pre-season and did exactly that.
He got a huge debut starting in the Super Cup triumph over Villarreal.
He then followed it up with a first league start scoring in a 3-0 win over Crystal Palace.
As you’ve seen with both goals from Chalobah is that he loves this club, it means the world to him and that’s what I love to see.
Players playing for the club they’ve dreamed about playing for since he joined the club as an under-9.
The dream would have been huge all those years ago and the fight to keep believing and working on his game is a huge testament to the man he is.
Trevoh Chalobah’s brother Nathaniel was involved in the Chelsea title-winning side under Antonio Conte before moving on to Watford.
After a bad knee injury, he showed his worth last season with the captain’s armband helping Watford get promoted to the Premier League.
His famous push on Aguero lives long in my mind as a memory I won’t ever forget.
Talking about memories I won’t forget its moments like in May when the side with a handful of academy graduates took on Man City in Porto.
Reece James and Mason Mount started the match with the latter setting up the only goal of the game.
Thiago Silva got an injury mid-game and academy player Andreas Christensen came on to help keep a clean sheet
Although they never actually made it onto the field we had Billy Gilmour, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Tino Anjorin and Tammy Abraham as part of the squad.
For many years it looked like it might be Ruben Loftus-Cheek that would break what felt like a curse.
He picked up a huge injury that set him back after a great season under Maurizio Sarri.
After a season on loan at Fulham he’s returned to fight for his place and now looking ahead of summer loan signing Saul in the pecking order.
He’s showing signs of being back to his best and it’s a joy to watch. I know I won’t be the only one.
that watches Loftus-Cheek play and smiles every time I see him glide past a challenge and hold off the opposition with his strength.
The academy over the years has won many trophies including seven FA Youth Cups in the last 11 years.
Five coming back-to-back as we dominated youth football as well as four back-to-back south league winners medals. The club hasn’t just dominated in terms of England.
They won back-to-back UEFA Youth League titles. The youth equivalent of the men’s Champions League.
The quality never stops being produced with the likes of Levi Colwill, Armando Broja, Ian Maatsen, Ethan Ampadu, Tino Anjorin, Henry Lawrence and Dujon
Sterling on loan with players like Teddy Sharman-Lowe, Harvey Vale, Jude Soonsup-Bell, Xavier Mbuyamba, Charlie Webster and more plying their trade in the development squad gaining more and more experience and quality.
This latest international duty two weeks proved yet again Chelsea are a huge help when it comes to England. As the great @Chelsea Youth shares in these tweets.
Even if the players don’t make it at Chelsea there is plenty of proof to show players go on to have very good careers even away from Chelsea.
Jack Cork left Chelsea after a great loan at Premier League side Burnley. He’s now got himself over 250 appearances in the league. A long list of names from Ryan Bertrand, Patrick van Aanholt, Patrick Bamford, Dom Solanke, Jeremie Boga to Bertrand Traore.
Fikayo Tomori has just been selected in the latest England side after switching to AC Milan in the summer on a permanent basis. His academy best friend Tammy Abraham also made the switch this summer to Roma and he’s started in red hot form with four goals and two assists to his name.
Two upcoming full-backs in Tino Livramento and Tariq Lamptey are lighting up matches when they’ve been given a chance since leaving Chelsea. While on-loan midfielder Conor Gallagher has just won back-to-back Player Of The Month awards with Crystal Palace with two goals and three assists. It’s been a slowish start for former Blue Marc Guehi at Crystal Palace but he’s been given the honour of being named England U21 captain which speaks volumes for him after his impressive performance at Swansea last season.
Declan Rice is one that got away very young but he has shown over the years that even if he was released by the club a little too early it’s still not too late to make a career and the determination and mental strength to come again cant go unnoticed.
Nathan Ake is also a player that couldn’t find game time in the side with the consistent change of managers but has kicked on to get himself a huge move to title-holders Man City.
This is just a small number of names. I could list many others that have gone on to have fine footballing careers after graduating from the Chelsea academy but only so many I can write about in one article.
If you think Chelsea’s name shouldn’t be up there with the best of the best when it comes to academies then you are very wrong.