The Loan Report: June 29 – July 5

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July 5, 2020

June gave way to July this past week and, while the Loan Report still lacks fireworks, we’re moving towards the end of a long season that will have tested the resolve of everyone involved. Headliners The headlines this week were made by two players who aren’t actually playing. Charlie Brown’s first venture into professional football was ended prematurely when the Belgian season was cancelled due to the pandemic, but he…

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The Chelsea Academy Class of 2020

academyabove
July 2, 2020

Football has been in a strange place these last few months, and few if any of us really know what lies ahead, but there are some constants that remain in place regardless. The academic school year, for example, might have been interrupted in March by the government’s enforced lockdown, but it officially ends in July and everyone moves up a year or heads for pastures new. The fabled last day…

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The Loan Report: June 22-28

pasalic2
June 28, 2020

It’s a been a slow and steady return to life on loan for Chelsea’s far-flung masses, with the headlines this week taken by Mario Pašalić and Matt Miazga. Headliners This will be Pašalićs last-ever appearance in a Loan Report, for this week Atalanta officially triggered their option to buy the Croatian midfielder, bringing an end to a six-year affiliation with Chelsea. After joining from Hajduk Split in 2014, Pašalić was…

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The Loan Report: June 15-21

pasalic2
June 21, 2020

Football is well and truly back across Europe now, so the Loan Report returns in full to catch up on what’s been happening as the 2019-20 season hurtles towards a hurried conclusion. England Premier League Danny Drinkwater didn’t feature for Aston Villa against Sheffield United in midweek, and loan rules prevented him from doing so against Chelsea on Sunday. Championship Swansea were quick out of the blocks on the Championship’s…

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The Loan Report: June 8-14

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June 14, 2020

We’re back! After a three-month hiatus, the Loan Report returns for what promises to be a season finale like no other. The majority of leagues across Europe will be back in action by next weekend, with a six-week sprint to the finish line in early August and, while some leagues have been back for a while, the action is really about to pick back up. Who’s already finished? Some leagues,…

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Chelsea Academy In A Time Of Lockdown

academyabove
June 14, 2020

It’s been three months since everything shut down. Ordinarily a thriving, energetic hub of promise, innovation and teamwork, Chelsea’s Cobham training ground has been reduced to a skeleton operation where the first team are only just getting back to business, but for the academy, everything has changed. How do you run a youth development system remotely? Well, you adapt. You find a way, and you return to your principles. For…

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Academy Season Review: Under-18s

cfcu18
May 9, 2020

In any ordinary year, you might look at this Chelsea Under-18 team as being just as dominant as many of their predecessors were. They’re FA Youth Cup Semi Finalists due to host Manchester United for the right to play in yet another Final (with a decision on whether the competition continues or not still pending) before Covid-19 intervened, and with just two defeats and three draws in the league, they…

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Academy Season Review: Development Squad

DSSR
May 8, 2020

The season ended prematurely and in circumstances nobody saw coming back in August but, for Chelsea’s Development Squad, 2019-20 was memorable in so many ways. They might yet be crowned PL2 champions – that’s a decision for another day – but whether they’re officially awarded the title or not, going unbeaten in all 18 league matches up to the start of March when action was brought to a halt is…

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In Their Own Words: Chelsea’s 2016 UEFA Youth League Winners

April 18, 2020

Five years ago this week, Chelsea became the first English club to win the UEFA Youth League, beating Shakhtar Donetsk 3-2 in the Final. Four years ago today, they retained it – becoming the first and only title holder to successfully defend their crown – in a dramatic 2-1 win over a much-fancied Paris Saint-Germain team. Here, with thanks to ChelseaFC.com and Chelsea TV, is how they did it, in…

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Developing On and Off The Pitch

DUBLIN, IRELAND - JULY 10: Frank Lampard, Manager of Chelsea looks on from the Chelsea bench prior to the Pre-Season Friendly match between Bohemians FC and Chelsea FC at Dalymount Park on July 10, 2019 in Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
April 13, 2020

Frank Lampard’s youth revolution at Stamford Bridge has been one of the talking points of the now temporarily(?) suspended 2019-20 campaign but, as exciting as the on-pitch development has been, it’s just as fascinating looking at his backroom team. Chelsea have been consistently successful in developing coaches for the future just as much as they have players; some might indeed argue that they’ve been even more successful in that regard….

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