One of Mourinho’s latest quotes goes on playing youngsters goes something like this:
“If the season goes in one direction, that it becomes closed and we can’t win, I will go just with the kids. It makes no sense, when you have nothing to win, to play the older players.
“I’ll play the players we’re waiting for instead. I can arrive in a moment where I will look to the kids and say, ‘Let’s go. Non-stop.’ I am ruthless.”
Which is to say that he won’t necessarily be blooding his the Chelsea kids just yet, but it does give hope to the fans that are excited to see the youth given a chance.
Of course, no-one wants to be in a situation where Chelsea don’t have a single trophy to play for and I can’t foresee it. But there is more to the quote than that.
Already this season we’ve Loftus-Cheek, given a verbal bashing after the game in Sydney, play with maturity beyond his years in the first team while Kurt Zouma has emerged as a genuine contender for a centre back starting spot. Not to mention his versatility in filling the Matic role when required.
But what of the others?
- Kenedy seems to be a player that Mourinho is keen on and his exposure to the first team squad will do him a world of good. It also shows a measure of how highly he is rated when he immediately jumps to the front of the queue ahead of other players that have impressed consistently in the academy (e.g. Solanke)
- Bertrand Traore is a player that I rate highly! After a stellar season at Vitesse, his opportunities have been limited to the substitutes bench aside from a brief appearance (his debut) against Maccabi. Yes it seems we’re loading up on left sided players but I actually think Traore could provide us with another option as a striker, that option mainly being pace.
Without rounding up all those out on loan, these are the four that appear to stand the best chance of breaking through – Zouma, Loftus-Cheek, Kenedy & Traore.
Who would you like to see given a chance in our upcoming run of fixtures?