Under-18s: Arsenal 1-2 Chelsea

August 10, 2019

Time. A valuable commodity, a great healer, all powerful. Whatever way you look at it, time is as much of an influence over academy football as anything else and, as Chelsea kicked off their new Under-18 season with a 2-1 win at Arsenal, it came into focus once again. Five months ago, Andy Myers’ team essentially yielded their four-year stranglehold on the Under-18 South league title by losing 3-0 on…


Development Squad: Swindon Town 2-3 Chelsea

August 6, 2019

What is Leasing.com anyway? The controversial Football League Trophy, with a new headline sponsor nobody seems to have heard of, returned on Tuesday night in sparsely-populated stadiums where teams of teenagers wearing numbers more closely associated with bingo than football take on senior pros who’d rather be just about anywhere else. Teams from the third and fourth tiers of the domestic game are compelled to play roughly one-third of their…


The Loan Report: August 1-4

August 4, 2019

It’s that time again. The tenth season of the Loan Report gets under way here at TheChels.net and it promises to be no less exciting now than it has been over a decade that has seen Chelsea launch England’s most expansive programme of developing young talent both for performance and for profit. A wide-reaching and often controversial programme, it has been the source of criticism and inspiration, as a number…


A Chelsea Academy Season Preview

August 4, 2019

Three months ago, the 2018-19 Chelsea academy season drew to an unusually subdued conclusion. The Development Squad claimed a hard-earned 2-1 win away to Brighton on a cool Friday night on the Sussex coast, just a week after the Under-18s had rounded off their campaign with a similar victory on their travels at Reading. There was no hoopla, there were no memorable celebrations and there was no silverware. For the…


Browns Boost Blues In Brittany

July 18, 2019

Two years after visiting darkest France in Périgord to catch a glimpse of Chelsea’s young players in an exhibition game against FC Bergerac Perigord, I’ve been immersed into French Brittany to follow the progress of Chelsea’s U23 team. First, it’s important to emphasis that the sarcastic jibe of “loan army” is growing increasingly inaccurate and, instead, the spotlight i on the work being done at academy level for a few…


Andy Myers and Ed Brand take on new Academy roles

July 14, 2019

Chelsea have named Andy Myers and Ed Brand as their Development Squad and Under-18 Head Coaches respectively for the forthcoming season in the latest reshuffle of academy personnel following Frank Lampard’s appointment as First Team Head Coach. Lampard named Joe Edwards among his backroom team last week, reuniting him with fellow academy graduate Jody Morris, creating a vacancy at Under-23 level after two years in charge. Myers, who this summer…


Introducing The Chelsea Academy Class of 2019

BOREHAMWOOD, ENGLAND - MARCH 15:  The Chelsea team celebrate winning the U16 Premier League Cup Final after the match between Arsenal U16 and Chelsea U16 at Meadow Park on March 15, 2019 in Borehamwood, England.  (Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)
July 1, 2019

It’s trendy for people, inside academy football or otherwise, to be bullish about the quality of talent in their junior ranks. With every passing season it seems there are five or six new ‘golden generations’ at clubs up and down the country, anointing the ‘next ones’ before the previous gems have even left their teenage years. It’s understandable to an extent; the promise of tomorrow is naturally exciting, the discovery…


A Frank Discussion

super frank
June 30, 2019

Frank Lampard will be announced as Chelsea’s new manager this week. The decision to hire the 41 year-old is as radical as any made by Roman Abramovich since his purchase of the club in 2003, and has already caused quite some consternation in an already divided fan base in the short-term as to the appropriateness of the move, while also creating an intriguing dynamic for the months and hopefully years…


The Academy Decade: Former Blues Far And Wide

June 22, 2019

As we enter the last six months of the footballing decade, we’re presented with the opportunity to reflect upon the work done by Chelsea at academy level between 2010 and 2019. In the first of several pieces that will both look back and take a peek at the future, we’ll focus on the numerous Cobham graduates who have flown the nest and made a name for themselves elsewhere. For, while…


Sporting Directors: A Reality Cech

cech suit
June 9, 2019

With the imminent arrival of club legend Petr Cech in what we expect to be a Sporting Director role, I felt compelled to write something about it. The good, the bad and, most importantly, to dispel any misconceptions about what the role entails. It is worth noting that clubs big and small have adopted the role across continental Europe, although the concept still seems foreign to most fans, teams and…