Michael Emenalo defends Chelsea’s youth record in relation to Tottenham

21 Apr

Chelsea technical director Michael Emenalo has claimed that the Blues are not the only club to suffer from an inability to promote youth players, suggesting the praise aimed at Tottenham this season has been misguided.


No academy player has established themself at Stamford Bridge since John Terry’s rise to the first-team in the 1990s, and because they possess an excellent youth system, Chelsea often come under criticism for their unwillingness to trust in youngsters.

This is the opposite of Spurs, who have a core of young English players propelling them up the Premier League table, and who are, for the most part, key figures in the England international squad.

However, Emenalo has suggested that the North London club share the same problem as Chelsea, as only one of the key players in their team is actually an academy graduate.

“We try to remind them it’s not just a Chelsea problem,” the Nigerian said when pressed on the Blues’ failures.

“That’s what they hear. (But) with all the hoopla (around Tottenham), it’s the one player.

“The one key player is Kane, Delle Ali they bought from MK Dons, (Tom) Carroll is a peripheral player and (Eric) Dier they bought (from Sporting Lisbon).”

The recent struggles in West London are throught to be coming to a close, however, as this current group of youth products are extremely highly rated.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Ola Aina, Dom Solanke and Izzy Brown are the pick of the bunch, and Emenalo wants these players to make it into the first-team to stop the Blues needing to splash the cash in the transfer market every year.

He continued: “With the investment we are making and where we think the game is going and the competition that we have, you can’t just buy your way out of trouble all the time.

“We can see what we have and we can compare them to what we see in other countries in Europe and other clubs in England and we think we have very, very good young players who should be able to come through.

“It’s a massive job to try to keep them patient and to keep them going until they get here, but I think from next season there will be signs.”

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