Incoming Chelsea boss has plenty of young talent at his peril, but will it be utilised in the right manner under the Italian?
Chelsea fans have seen academy starlet Ruben Loftus-Cheek get a run in the side in previous weeks after netting his first goal for the club against Scunthorpe in January. He also scored his first Premier League goal against Aston Villa last weekend and will be hoping for an extended run in the team during the climax of the season. Loftus-Cheek has been compared to Michael Ballack in the past few days and there are evidently a lot of similarities between the two. Big, strong, powerful and isn’t often pushed off the ball.
Roman Abramovich is desperate for Chelsea to produce stars from the Academy with the last being John Terry, is Loftus-Cheek that man? He can be Chelsea’s Paul Pogba if Conte gives him the opportunities to showcase his talent on a regular basis.
Before Conte finally agreed to become Chelsea’s permanent manager, Abramovich demanded him to give the young players extended runs in the side. This season only Kenedy, Bertand Traore and Loftus-Cheek have been involved regularly with the first team. All three have done relatively well and impressed, they will look too fight hard in pre season and push their claims for starting places next season.
Pre season is always exciting for the younger players to showcase their ability to the new manager and work extremely hard in training to prove they deserve a chance. Conte demands maximum effort from his players and is even compared to Jose Mourinho about the way he runs the club and his demands.
Chelsea fans also hope Conte will give younger players more game time than Mourinho did. Furthermore, the younger players will reap the rewards if they continuously work hard on the training field and throughout the off season. Chelsea’s youth academy is one of the best in the world, winning various major honours in the past few years. But how many of those have actually gone on to be first team regulars and make a statement of intent to the manager? Not very many at all, for the Chelsea fans sake they hope to see a significant change in the coming years.
As many as 33 Chelsea players are out on loan at various clubs across the globe, but it remains to be seen whether they will return and play a significant role under Conte. They will feel as though they have a lot to prove to the new manager. Nathan Ake who has had an extremely good season with Watford with come back into the defensive reckoning. He is getting the opportunity to impress at Premier League level and test himself against the best which is something he hasn’t been able to do before. Lewis Baker is another huge talent and Jose Mourinho said he was to blame if the youngster didn’t become a full international under his management and in the coming years. A tireless midfielder who is very energetic which Conte will love to see, he surely can push his case for selection throughout pre season and show Conte he is worthy of first team football.
Young talented strikers Izzy Brown and Dominic Solanke are the other players hoping to impress Conte. Both have won many trophies with Chelsea’s youth team and offer different strengths in terms of their style of play. Solanke is a quick powerful striker and is an out and out goalscorer whereas Brown is creative and skilful but also has a good shot on him and knows where the back of the net is. All of those will be hoping to show their own different strengths to Conte and hope they get game time before the start off the season to represent their talent.
Pre season could be an extremely exciting time for the young Chelsea players hoping to impress the new boss and fans will be eager to see if Conte gives them that chance to do so. Over the last few years fans have been crying out to give younger players extended runs in the first team and is Conte the man to do so?