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10 minutes ago, didierforever said:

"Tier or 2".

Azpi has his flaws. As a RB his attacking game is lacking. There is a reason why he is not Spain's no.1 RB. As a CB he had a great season in a 3 CB system but in a 2 CB system, his lack of height would be exploited. All in all, he is a very good player. But I wont say world class.

He's basically flawless outside of height which is why it should be worked around. In terms of pure defending i personally believe only prime JT's been better for us and he had just as big a problem with pace as Azpi does in the air, but how many times was that truly exposed? 

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1 minute ago, Argo said:

He's basically flawless outside of height which is why it should be worked around. In terms of pure defending i personally believe only prime JT's been better for us and he had just as big a problem with pace as Azpi does in the air, but how many times was that truly exposed? 

I think Cole was better. 

I feel lack of pace can be dealt with far more easily than lack of height because be it barca/chelsea, teams will get opportunities of putting balls in the box and strikers like deeney/llorente can single him out, which is harder to deal with. 

Also, JT was a CB, normally playing in a low block. Azpi is a RB whose attacking game is average in times where full backs are supposed to be marcelo-ish. Add to that JT's prowess in set pieces and it makes him a far far more vital player for any team than Azpi would be. Again, this does not mean I dont like azpi. I love the guy and hope (and know) that he is going to be a vital cog for us in the coming years. 

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It's true that you can't expect to blood in youngster after youngster at a club that wants to challenge for every competition we enter. However, it is important to develop an ethos whereby if a player does excel on loan or coming on as a substitute they are given further chances to prove themselves. Examples where we have failed in this regard are in my opinion:           Kevin de bruyne on loan in Germany and Lukaku at West Brom and Everton.

If our ethos as a club was tuned slightly more towards development of youth players in our first team, these errors would have been avoided. 

Looking at the example of harry Kane at Tottenham helps illustrate this point. He was average on loan in the championship. He scored a combined total of 14 goals in three seasons in the lower leagues. Yet at Tottenham they clearly trusted in his talent. He was given opportunities albeit through injuries to their forward line and now he's an exceptional striker. Tammy Abraham got 23 goals last season. He should be given a chance next season after his loan at Swansea. If the club believe in a player's talent he should be given chances. I don't think players should be judged solely on their performances on loan because as kane shows they don't always signify the qualities of a player. If they do impress on loan players should definitely be given consistent minutes. Yet also if their talent is clear on the training pitch they should be given the same chances. I think the club need to improve slightly in this regard.  

Personally i don't feel youth integration at Chelsea is a problem this season. However if in five years we are still in the same position then we are failing to capitalise on the asset that is our youth academy.

 

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34 minutes ago, DidierDidier said:

It's true that you can't expect to blood in youngster after youngster at a club that wants to challenge for every competition we enter. However, it is important to develop an ethos whereby if a player does excel on loan or coming on as a substitute they are given further chances to prove themselves. Examples where we have failed in this regard are in my opinion:           Kevin de bruyne on loan in Germany and Lukaku at West Brom and Everton.

If our ethos as a club was tuned slightly more towards development of youth players in our first team, these errors would have been avoided. 

Looking at the example of harry Kane at Tottenham helps illustrate this point. He was average on loan in the championship. He scored a combined total of 14 goals in three seasons in the lower leagues. Yet at Tottenham they clearly trusted in his talent. He was given opportunities albeit through injuries to their forward line and now he's an exceptional striker. Tammy Abraham got 23 goals last season. He should be given a chance next season after his loan at Swansea. If the club believe in a player's talent he should be given chances. I don't think players should be judged solely on their performances on loan because as kane shows they don't always signify the qualities of a player. If they do impress on loan players should definitely be given consistent minutes. Yet also if their talent is clear on the training pitch they should be given the same chances. I think the club need to improve slightly in this regard.  

Personally i don't feel youth integration at Chelsea is a problem this season. However if in five years we are still in the same position then we are failing to capitalise on the asset that is our youth academy.

 

Harry Kane is an anomaly, it's like citing Fergie as a reason to stick to manager's.

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20 minutes ago, Argo said:

Harry Kane is an anomaly, it's like citing Fergie as a reason to stick to manager's.

My essential point wasn't the liklehood of a Harry Kane situation happening at Chelsea. It was about trusting in talent. Tottenham coaches saw something in Kane and gave him a chance despite poor loan spells. I'll repeat myself, If we have a player who performs well on loan or is exceptionally talented (I'm thinking of players like Mason Mount, Dujon Sterling and Tammy Abraham) they have to be given chances in the near future. I don't think the point I'm making is particularly controversial. 

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27 minutes ago, DidierDidier said:

My essential point wasn't the liklehood of a Harry Kane situation happening at Chelsea. It was about trusting in talent. Tottenham coaches saw something in Kane and gave him a chance despite poor loan spells. I'll repeat myself, If we have a player who performs well on loan or is exceptionally talented (I'm thinking of players like Mason Mount, Dujon Sterling and Tammy Abraham) they have to be given chances in the near future. I don't think the point I'm making is particularly controversial. 

They gave him "a chance" because Soldado and Adebayor were out and got lucky. Not just Chelsea, any club are unlikely to hand out chances to Championship flops because the likelihood is they will be wasting there time. 

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10 minutes ago, Argo said:

They gave him "a chance" because Soldado and Adebayor were out and got lucky. Not just Chelsea, any club are unlikely to hand out chances to Championship flops because the likelihood is they will be wasting there time. 

I'm not saying that Chelsea should give minutes to every loan player we put in the championship. However players shouldn't be discounted if say they don't tear up the championship or the Eredivisie with Vitesse. In my opinion the club need to throw more players in at the deep end like Mount and Dujon Sterling because they have demonstrated that their dominance in youth football. Either they flourish or they show that they need more time on loan, there's not much to lose in doing so. 

What frustrates me is when someone like Mount is not given game time at the end of the season after we have won the league and he had been the standout youth footballer in the best academy in the country that season. I also personally believe players like him (not Mount himself because he's off to Vitesse) should be starting in the Carabao cup next season. 

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3 hours ago, DidierDidier said:

Looking at the example of harry Kane at Tottenham helps illustrate this point. He was average on loan in the championship. He scored a combined total of 14 goals in three seasons in the lower leagues. Yet at Tottenham they clearly trusted in his talent. He was given opportunities albeit through injuries to their forward line and now he's an exceptional striker. Tammy Abraham got 23 goals last season. He should be given a chance next season after his loan at Swansea. If the club believe in a player's talent he should be given chances. I don't think players should be judged solely on their performances on loan because as kane shows they don't always signify the qualities of a player. If they do impress on loan players should definitely be given consistent minutes. Yet also if their talent is clear on the training pitch they should be given the same chances. I think the club need to improve slightly in this regard.  

Personally i don't feel youth integration at Chelsea is a problem this season. However if in five years we are still in the same position then we are failing to capitalise on the asset that is our youth academy.

 

Well there you go, through injuries, we haven't had that problem at Chelsea. It wasn't just injuries that helped Kane get his chance, it was the fact that every other striker at Tottenham at the time was horrendous. The same can be said for a lot of Tottenaham players. The only reason they have given so many players a chance now is because so many of the players they signed with the Bale money were duds. Another thing to take notice of is that a lot of Tottenham's young players coming through weren't even their young players to begin with. Walker, Rose, Dier, Alli, they all came from different youth squads.

This point about Chelsea not bringing forward young players is unfair, every other top Premier League team is the same. The difference is ( and it's a big difference ) we haven't had as many injuries as other clubs. Liverpool have no young player being bought forward in their club, the last they had was Sterling and he buggered off to City and isn't even good. The other one was Flanagan and he has disappeared now and he only got into the team because he was the only back up player they had that could play the position they needed him to play in.

City are the same, they have no youth players getting in.

Arsenal are like Tottenham, the only young players they bring into the team are players that came through other youth teams. Iwobi is one of their own and he's sh*te.

United get a bit of praise for bringing through young players, but what young player has made it at United in the last 10 years ? Rashford ? he hasn't made it yet and there are no guarantee's with him either. The other young United players that come from their academy stick around for a bit and then bugger off to some Championship team or a team fighting relegation. No United youth players have stuck around and become a key player for them for years now.

 

It's not just a problem with Chelsea, it's a problem with ALL top Premier League clubs. 

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we all have a strong desire for a young player to come through the ranks as it's easier to relate to them as most of them have an affinity with chelsea just like we do but it doesn't work out like that in real life.

 

Just as someone else has said earlier in the thread - the role of the academy is to produce professional footballers period. not just footballers for chelsea.

 

and our record in the last 10 years has only gotten better and better - jack cork, ryan bertrand, scott sinclair, nathan ake, patrick van anholt, fabio borini, jeffrey bruma, miroslav stoch, gokhan tore, gael kakuta, bertrand traore....these players in particular have all gone on to play at the highest level of league football in the top 4 or 5 leagues (indeed, with varied degree of success). but we played a significant part in their development and no only did the club make money on them in most cases, but the academy takes a lot of pride in the results of their education at chelsea. that's not even including the legion of academy graduates we have playing at lower levels in the system, all earning a living doing what they were trained and taught to do at chelsea....

 Eventually, one will come through that will be good enough for the first team which is an absolute bonus - but the priority of the academy is to educate and produce footballers + make a profit on them if possible ...which we do just about as good as anyone in this country.

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Kane is a great example if you compare him to Tammy Abraham. Abraham is like a bambi compared to Kane. If you look at Costa he is built to this league. Abraham needs to bulk up and gain experience for 3 seasons to even be close.

People are so tangled up on youth. I get it it would be great to witness the JT story once more or see one of our boys become the next Kane but it is not an obsession for me.

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10 hours ago, Scott Harris said:

Well there you go, through injuries, we haven't had that problem at Chelsea. It wasn't just injuries that helped Kane get his chance, it was the fact that every other striker at Tottenham at the time was horrendous. The same can be said for a lot of Tottenaham players. The only reason they have given so many players a chance now is because so many of the players they signed with the Bale money were duds. Another thing to take notice of is that a lot of Tottenham's young players coming through weren't even their young players to begin with. Walker, Rose, Dier, Alli, they all came from different youth squads.

This point about Chelsea not bringing forward young players is unfair, every other top Premier League team is the same. The difference is ( and it's a big difference ) we haven't had as many injuries as other clubs. Liverpool have no young player being bought forward in their club, the last they had was Sterling and he buggered off to City and isn't even good. The other one was Flanagan and he has disappeared now and he only got into the team because he was the only back up player they had that could play the position they needed him to play in.

City are the same, they have no youth players getting in.

Arsenal are like Tottenham, the only young players they bring into the team are players that came through other youth teams. Iwobi is one of their own and he's sh*te.

United get a bit of praise for bringing through young players, but what young player has made it at United in the last 10 years ? Rashford ? he hasn't made it yet and there are no guarantee's with him either. The other young United players that come from their academy stick around for a bit and then bugger off to some Championship team or a team fighting relegation. No United youth players have stuck around and become a key player for them for years now.

 

It's not just a problem with Chelsea, it's a problem with ALL top Premier League clubs. 

In a crucial match for top 4 last season when Liverpool needed to beat Stoke what did Klopp do? He started with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Woodburn. Harry Winks at Tottenham was getting consistent game time before his injury. To say that Rashford hasn't made it yet and imply that he might not is also pretty suspect considering what he's already demonstrated in the premier league. There are also other examples. 

It's about trusting in youth which Klopp at Dortmund and at Liverpool and Pochettino at Tottenham have shown they are committed to doing. To be honest I'm relatively happy with Conte in regards to his approach to the youth. I just think we can turn it up a notch in terms of giving our young academy player's chances. 

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Im not expexting droves of youngsters coming into the team but lets be fair here when was the last time 1 youth player came through and stayed??

Im not on about dropping key players for youth but why buy players for 20mil+ to be sitting on the bench when the likes of ake have proven themselves good enough in the epl. 

All the big european teams bring through more youth players than we do so why cant we bring in 1 or 2 every year give them a chance in the team. then see if they are good enough to stay instead of loaning them out to another epl teams.  

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49 minutes ago, Scottish_mike said:

All the big european teams bring through more youth players than we do so why cant we bring in 1 or 2 every year give them a chance in the team. then see if they are good enough to stay instead of loaning them out to another epl teams.  

The problem as far I can see is that to give 1 or 2 a chance in the first team is potentially risking ~10pts per season. For the likes of Real Madrid and Bayern that's fine because they can afford to drop points and still be in with a shout to compete for the league title. For us the relative strength of our opposition and the cost of failure is simply too great to be worth the risk/benefit.

5 hours ago, DidierDidier said:

In a crucial match for top 4 last season when Liverpool needed to beat Stoke what did Klopp do? He started with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Woodburn.

Iirc they were both subbed at HT when it appeared Liverpool were heading for defeat.

 

Edited by the special one
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2 hours ago, Scottish_mike said:

Im not expexting droves of youngsters coming into the team but lets be fair here when was the last time 1 youth player came through and stayed??

Im not on about dropping key players for youth but why buy players for 20mil+ to be sitting on the bench when the likes of ake have proven themselves good enough in the epl. 

All the big european teams bring through more youth players than we do so why cant we bring in 1 or 2 every year give them a chance in the team. then see if they are good enough to stay instead of loaning them out to another epl teams.  

If you are refering to Rudiger, he isn't coming to sit on the bench.

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1 hour ago, the special one said:

The problem as far I can see is that to give 1 or 2 a chance in the first team is potentially risking ~10pts per season. For the likes of Real Madrid and Bayern that's fine because they can afford to drop points and still be in with a shout to compete for the league title. For us the relative strength of our opposition and the cost of failure is simply too great to be worth the risk/benefit.

Iirc they were both subbed at HT when it appeared Liverpool were heading for defeat.

 

the 10 point per season statement is pretty arbitrary. I personally believe you have a lot more to gain for starting someone like Mount in Pedro's position in a few home matches against mid table to lower league opposition alongside a full strength team. I don't think we would drop any points from those matches, that's my personal opinion. 

I agree starting two youngsters away to Stoke is pretty dangerous. I was using that as evidence to dismiss the point the person I was quoting was making that Liverpool aren't bringing anyone through. 

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2 minutes ago, DidierDidier said:

the 10 point per season statement is pretty arbitrary. I personally believe you have a lot more to gain for starting someone like Mount in Pedro's position in a few home matches against mid table to lower league opposition alongside a full strength team. I don't think we would drop any points from those matches, that's my personal opinion. 

I agree starting two youngsters away to Stoke is pretty dangerous. I was using that as evidence to dismiss the point the person I was quoting was making that Liverpool aren't bringing anyone through. 

To be a bit pedantic we played Bertrand in the CL final. I know he was 21 but he still wasn't hugely experienced in the top flight and never played in Europe before. If another club did that it would be used an example of trusting youth.

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We have some very talented youth but in truth no one is on the level of Alli or Kane. No one has shown signs they are close to that. Even Matic who got some stick last season is a better choice by some distance over Chalobah.

We have good talent in our hands but not top top talent.

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http://www.chelseafc.com/news/latest-news/2017/07/the-young-generation.html    Good interview with Neil Bath, worth a read.

As we reflect on the 2016/17 season and begin to look forward, the official Chelsea website sat down with our head of youth development Neil Bath to hear his thoughts on another memorable campaign for our Academy…

 

The trophy cabinet in our Academy at Cobham is full with every notable piece of silverware it can win in development football. The Under-18 Premier League national title secured in May was the last remaining prize now sitting alongside FA Youth Cups, UEFA Youth Leagues and Under-21 titles.

Players who have been at the club for a decade, having signed as Under-9s, are also stepping into the limelight whether it be as part of Antonio Conte’s first team squad last season; as members of England’s World Cup-winning Under-20 side this summer; or someone such as Tammy Abrahamwho scored 26 goals during his maiden loan spell at Bristol City.

Bath has watched them all advance through the system during 13 years in his current role and believes they are reaping the rewards of an environment of excellence at the club. A challenging and diverse games programme forms a significant part of a player’s journey through the youth system, including a gradual introduction to the demands of winning provided by Premier League tournaments and foreign tours. They test players against different styles and opponents, and Bath is a firm believer in cultivating a winning mentality in players and teams at a formative stage of development.

‘Throughout the year, all our Academy age groups participate in overseas tours and tournaments which prepares them for future tournament football and for the challenge of winning,’ he tells the official Chelsea website. ‘We go out every weekend trying to win our games but we also have clear principles of play so we develop our players technically, tactically and physically. Playing to win is a big part of development because it challenges the players’ mentally as well.

‘You can see the benefits of that with our achievements in winning trophies at the older age groups in recent years and now with our boys involved in successes with England. You hear a lot in the media about club versus country but in youth development it’s so important to work together to find the best way to develop players and the experience of playing for your country should complement the competitions in academy football.

‘These competitions and the international tournaments are an important way to bridge the gap to senior football. Players like Tammy and Andreas Christensen have played in them all and I’m sure the experience has helped in their transition to the senior game.’

England’s youngsters have received prominent coverage this summer following the Under-20 World Cup triumph in South Korea, as well as the Toulon Tournament victory and a run to the final at the Under-17 European Championships. There followed a Euro semi-final at Under-21 level and the Under-19s have just begun their tournament with a win. The Chelsea Academy has once again been the best represented of all clubs across England youth age groups this season.

 

‘It is another huge highlight of our season to see players representing England and winning international tournaments,’ notes Bath. ‘At the Under-17 Euros we had four players who started every game and they were so unfortunate to concede a late equaliser in the final and then lose on penalties.

‘We then had five players in the squad who won the Toulon trophy for the second year running and three boys who have come through the Academy involved in the huge achievement of winning a World Cup. All the players and staff feel immensely proud to witness our involvement in such important trophy successes.’

Silverware has also been collected closer to home as our youth team were victorious in the Under-18 Premier League south section, national league and FA Youth Cup.

‘The Under-18 Treble is obviously the highlight that stands out most for us this season. It is an unprecedented achievement and congratulations go to Jody Morris, Ed Brand and all the support staff and players involved with the youth team.

‘Yet we always make the point with youth development success that so many people have been involved in that journey over many years, especially when so many of the players have been here since eight or nine years old. The immediate players and staff involved deserve a huge amount of credit but so do all our other staff who work with the players throughout the pathway in all different areas and of course the parents. It’s an achievement we should all take pride in.’

Innovation and evolution are essential for continued improvement, aspects Bath has always acknowledged and addressed. Joe Edwards will return to the Academy coaching set-up in July to lead the development squad alongside Andy Myers, who was at Vitesse last year, while Morris and Brand will have the task of following up a remarkable year with the youth team. At the age groups directly below, former first team players Jon Harley and Tore Andre Flo will work alongside James Simmonds with the Under-15s and Under-16s.

The personnel changes coincide with more structural alterations to the programme, including the expansion of our full-time education provision to the Under-14 age group. A recent Ofsted audit of the education and welfare work carried out by all 20 Premier League clubs for 16- to 18-year-old players returned an ‘Outstanding’ rating. A permanent indoor facility completed recently will also cater for all-weather training, particularly for the younger players.

‘As well as the success that is visible from the outside, there’s always a foundation of work that’s continually taking place to ensure we improve,' says Bath. 'It’s vital to continually develop our facilities to keep up with the competition and the indoor arena forms a big part of that with a pitch two-thirds the size of Stamford Bridge, a viewing area for 200 spectators and a specialist gym.

 

‘Especially being in London alongside so many clubs, we are in constant competition so ensuring our entire programme is the best it can be is so important. That stretches from our coaching programme and the content of our work to an overall holistic approach to player care and education that remains at the forefront and is balanced carefully with football development. This work is not as obvious to many but it forms the basis to bring more success in the development of our players in future years.’

In his reflections at the end of the campaign 12 months ago, Bath highlighted the changing landscape of youth development, particularly in relation to senior football breakthrough and the pathway evolving into a 15-year project. He believes it is imperative that our programme and philosophy adjusts alongside those changes in the wider game.

‘We will continue to compete in as many competitions as possible for the development of our players but we accept we might not enjoy as much success as we have in recent years because we want to push our young players to experience the senior game at an even earlier age. Naturally, that will make winning youth tournaments more difficult but we don’t see that as being a problem.

‘It’s a challenge for us to compete and win things with even younger teams while striking the balance of getting the right player on loan at the right club and not undervaluing our programme back at Cobham.

‘Realistically, to break into a first team like ours you need to have played 150 to 200 games at senior level. Even someone like Eden Hazard had done that in France before coming to Chelsea so the reality is our young players will need to experience the same, which is almost three full seasons out on loan. If a player goes out at 18 or 19 years old, that means they will be 22 years old before being able to really compete for a regular place in the team and you can see that pathway with the likes of Ryan Bertrand and Nathaniel Chalobah.

 

The end of the interview suggests we intend to push the players out to face the world sooner than previously. So they mature at 20 rather than 22 to at present. This shows the club are aware of the problem of getting over the final hurdle of boy to man, good to see a new approach. Question is will it bare fruit? Time will tell. 

 

 

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On 03/07/2017 at 09:42, DidierDidier said:

In a crucial match for top 4 last season when Liverpool needed to beat Stoke what did Klopp do? He started with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Woodburn. Harry Winks at Tottenham was getting consistent game time before his injury. To say that Rashford hasn't made it yet and imply that he might not is also pretty suspect considering what he's already demonstrated in the premier league. There are also other examples. 

It's about trusting in youth which Klopp at Dortmund and at Liverpool and Pochettino at Tottenham have shown they are committed to doing. To be honest I'm relatively happy with Conte in regards to his approach to the youth. I just think we can turn it up a notch in terms of giving our young academy player's chances. 

Just out of curiosity then... how many trophies have Tottenham and Liverpool won under those respective managers who are giving youth a go?

 

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6 hours ago, evissy said:

We have some very talented youth but in truth no one is on the level of Alli or Kane. No one has shown signs they are close to that. Even Matic who got some stick last season is a better choice by some distance over Chalobah.

We have good talent in our hands but not top top talent.

Certainly can't agree with that. Matic had a few very good games last season but equally had some shockers. Whenever he got a chance (and there weren't THAT many, to help him gain some kind of momentum), Chalobah did okay and wasn't as poor as Matic was at times.

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22 minutes ago, CarefreeSimmo_ said:

Just out of curiosity then... how many trophies have Tottenham and Liverpool won under those respective managers who are giving youth a go?

 

Zero and I hope it stays that way. I just think we can give youth a little bit more opportunity while still reigning supreme. 

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5 hours ago, Nibs said:

Certainly can't agree with that. Matic had a few very good games last season but equally had some shockers. Whenever he got a chance (and there weren't THAT many, to help him gain some kind of momentum), Chalobah did okay and wasn't as poor as Matic was at times.

That imo is the fact people look for the good in the youth and bad in first teamers in this type of situation, for the same reason people were convinced Josh could have successfully filled in for out of sorts Lamps in 10/11 but the reality was something else. That said Nate can be a good squad player and would have no complaints with him remaining as such and im not even keen of Matic, but let's just say there's a reason one is wanted by United while the other (should he decide to leave) is likely going to Watford.

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