U21's pick up first 3 points
The activity that has surrounded Chelsea at Academy level has somewhat calmed down as the new season gets going but there is still plen...
The players out on loan are all getting plenty of minutes under their belt early on in the season except for Danny Pappoe who is still yet to feature for Colchester United at first team level this season. Sam Walker, Milan Lalkovic, George Saville, Todd Kane and Patrick Bamford all started last week for their clubs with Billy Clifford on the bench at Championship club Yeovil. Patrick Bamford bagged a goal for MK Dons this week as he builds up his game time following an injury. Over in Holland Patrick Van Aanholt was again the only player to feature for Vitesse but with Cuevas and Piazon now joined up and Kakuta back in training i am sure there will be more blues involved in this weekends game for Vitesse.
There was confirmation of another couple of loans this week the main one being the confirmation that young Brazilian right back Wallace has joined Inter for the season. A season there will do him the world of good should he get the games needed and come back next summer a better player. Also confirmed as being out on loan is the lesser spotted Jhon Pirez who has returned to Spanish side Leganes, Pirez spent last season there making 10 appearances and scoring 2 goals.
Last night the U21's played their second game of the season against Southampton. It was important for them to get a good result following the poor outing against Tottenham and that is exactly what we got. There was changes from the first game with Blackman replacing Beeney in goal, Ssewankambo at right back, Davey and Christensen in the middle with Ake playing at left back. In midfield was Baker, Loftus-Cheek and Jeremie Boga who would have to off just before half time injured after a late challenge. In the wide positions was Alex Kiwomya and Lamisha Musonda with Brown playing the striker role. Chelsea would initially go 1 down following a free kick that Jamal Blackman in goal completely lost the flight of and it bounced in past him. It didn't take too long for Chelsea to retaliate with a free kick of their own, Lewis Baker whipping a ball in from the left hand side flicked on by Alex Davey with enough to take it past the Saints keeper and into the back of the net.
Chelsea then took the lead following a very nice move from the team with some tidy passing around the back with Southampton chasing then when the opening was seen the ball was played through to Alex Kiwomya who got wide and floated in a perfect ball to the back post where Izzy Brown was waiting to head home, it was what Chelsea deserved for a good period of pressure. The game then fell into a period where there was little going on in terms of chances for either side but Southampton picked up their game in the second half and it wasn't until nearly 70 minutes into the game that Chelsea made things safe. Another free kick from Lewis Baker, this time Baker seeing the keeper in a poor position hits one straight over the keeper and in at the far post again highlighting Baker's threat from a dead ball.
Almost at the end of the game Chelsea made it 4 - 1, Islam Feruz who had struggled to get himself involved in the game picked the ball up inside the Saints half and drove forward taking it past one man, thenbeing very far out unleashed a shot that flew past the keeper and into the back of the net. It was a much better performance from the U21's and Lewis Baker had a very good game in the midfield as always and made a big difference. This team can still play a lot better and i am sure as the games come and go they will continue to get better. Brown has certainly settled in very well with goals in pre season and now 2 in 2 in the league. Andreas Christensen also continues to impress having had another great game and Lewis Baker showed his class to run the midfield once again.
Today will see the start of the new U18's season when Chelsea host Sunderland at Cobham. Last season the young blues got the season off to a great start winning game after game but were unable to keep the consistancy for the second half of the season. It looks like at both U21's and U18's level there may be more consistent teams with a young U21's squad and a younger U18's team so it will be interesting to see how both teams do. Hopefully the U18's get off to a good start today and I will bring you news of that game and hopefully highlights next week.
In some more disappointing news it was confirmed on Friday that the NextGen Series of which Chelsea reached the final last season will now not be running for the 2013/14 season due to a lack of funding. This is a big disappointment as it was a great competition for the youngsters last season and it was an opportunity for more games. It is not clear if the arrival of UEFA's rival competition has had any bearing on this but the guys from NextGen have said that they will be back next season and hopefully with a better competition than before. Time will tell if that will indeed happen but it is a blow to a very competition that it will not be taking place during the coming season.
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Carefree & KTBFFH!