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Conte: Time to give the academy players a chance

Tuesday 25th July 2017
Nathaniel Chalobah, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Izzy Brown, Andreas Christesen, Kurt Zouma, Kenedy, Lewis Baker, even Michu Batshuayi. These are the players that are being stunted in pursuit of immediate success. But this is a philosophy that has been inked into Chelsea ever since Roman Abramovich took over.

Until serious personnel changes happen in the roles behind their scouting and recruitment, it will be years until this changes at Chelsea.

The last academy product to break into (and stay in) the Blues squad

The last player from the Chelsea academy to become a regular was John Terry. Over 700 appearances, countless trophies, a sex and race scandal later, there's no doubt he is a Chelsea great. Even the farce of being subbed in the 26th minute of his final match won't tarnish what was a top-class career and stellar time in Chelsea's history. But there's one massive problem. There's not one single player that we can say will be "next". At one point it was Gael Kakuta, but where is he now?

Too many good quality young players pass through the academy and get lost or stunted once they're of age. Equally, too many young players have been brought in, loaned out or benched and then sold a few years later. Players sold includes: Lukaku, De Bruyne, Marco Van Ginkel, Ryan Bertrand, Oriol Romeu, Daniel Sturridge, Dominic Solanke, Bertrand Traore and Nathan Ake. The fact that Chalobah only moved to Watford for £5m shows the lack of sense in Chelsea's board. All the aforementioned players have left over the last five years. If the Blues are not careful next summer, Tammy Abraham could be added to the list along with others.

 Chelsea: the future is brighter than you think

Chelsea's Academy has been considered one of (if not the) best in the country for the past few years. So why has it been 17 years since a player broke into the first team and became a regular? Maybe it's down to the relentless desire for immediate success, which is certainly why the average managerial reign under Abramovich is at a measly 14 months. All we've seen is a desire for trophies short term and no strategic plan.
Is Roman's method one that has worked? Based on the number of trophies won, he's not complaining. But those die-hard Blues will see the financial outlay with a hint of disdain. That's down to the fact that it's so much at a time where Chelsea's academy output is one of the best in Europe. Academy products are breaking into the national side at all ages, with a few tipped to take the club forward. But right now, they're not being given the chance. This is a problem. If players from the academy aren't being given a chance, why have them? They might as well all go to University on BUCS football scholarships.
Tyrone Chambers

I know most people either love them or hate them but I a massive fan of Manchester United. I'm not afraid to speak the truth. Writing it as it is, bold enough to say it in the way no manager or player could say in public. I write about all things football but I love music as well, both listening and playing, keen drummer.

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