Podcast: Harvey Vale screamer & Carabao Cup Final Preview!

Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter! The Chelsea Spot Podcast

  1. Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter!
  2. Mount shines against Bournemouth & Enzo Fernandez to the Blues?!

In our latest episode of The Chelsea Spot Podcast, Paree (Owner – @CFCParee) was joined by Danny (Writer – @danny_new_) to discuss the FA Youth Cup 3-2 victory against Blackpool in the Quarter Finals, where Harvey Vale scored an absolute screamer and the likes of Lewis Hall and Charlie Webster impressed. The boys also looked ahead to this Sunday’s final in the Carabao Cup against Liverpool and expressed their nervy feeling…

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Podcast: Chelsea vs Spurs Preview & wing-back situation!

Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter! The Chelsea Spot Podcast

  1. Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter!
  2. Mount shines against Bournemouth & Enzo Fernandez to the Blues?!

In our latest episode of The Chelsea Spot Podcast, Paree (Owner – @CFCParee) and Danny (Writer – @danny_new_) gave their thoughts of our comfortable 5-1 victory against Chesterfield against Spurs. They also look ahead to the game against Spurs on Wednesday, as well as giving their thoughts on a potential formation change and the current wingback situation. 

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Have The Academy Boys Done Enough To Earn More Chances In The First Team?

The 2-0 win at Brentford’s Community Stadium could end up being a monumental shift in the chances that academy players from Chelsea see in the first team. Jude Soonsup-Bell, Harvey Vale and Xavier Simons started the game to a bit of surprise from the Chelsea fan base. Whereas, Lewis Hall and Charlie Webster were on the bench for the entirety of the match.

Jude Soonsup-Bell

Just 17-years-old, Soonsup-Bell came up against veteran Pontus Jansson and when on the ball looked the part. Strikers in this system usually are not heavily involved and Soonsup-Bell fell victim to that. Just 12 touches in 45 mins shows the magnitude of the lack of space up front. The way Brentford sat back in the first half also gave Soonsup-Bell more problems and a team as drilled as Brentford would be capable to deal with the top strikers of the Premier League and he should not feel hard done by. His silky footwork came into action on the numerous occasion and showed glimpses of what made him a star in the U18 side.

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Image Source : Twitter

I would like to see Soonsup-Bell given a chance with a front three of Hudson-Odoi and Mason Mount and maybe even up top with Lukaku. Being around a more experienced attacking unit can only benefit the 17-year-old and help to utilise his unique skillset. Tuchel also said that “Jude came out of a flu” which could be the explanation for just the 45 minute run-out. A fully fit Jude Soonsup-Bell, with more first team training sessions and a higher quality team around him could cause a lot of sides problems. Chances of seeing Soonsup-Bell get some more appearances in the first team? 7/10 IMO.

Harvey Vale

Vale was playing out of position today which is important to note and also makes his performance stand out even more. Cool, calm and collected on the ball is all you need to sum up Vale’s performance against Brentford. Yes, he did squander a big chance from an Azpilicueta cross but yet again that’s not usually his job in the U23’s. Dealing with a very physically demanding back line of Brentford, Vale’s eagerness to get stuck in and battle with players 10 years older than him says a lot about his mentality.

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Image Source : Twitter

Chances will come for Vale to play again in the first team, my preference and I think Vale’s also would be to see him in the attacking midfield role or even left wing back if needed. In his 65 minute stint, Vale showed he had a good understanding of the pace and physicality needed at the senior level. Same with Soonsup-Bell, more training sessions and playing with elite performers will only increase Vale’s ability. The game against Chesterfield on the 8th January jumps out when looking for chances where Vale could next start. Chances of seeing Harvey Vale get some more appearances in the first team? 8.5/10 IMO.

Xavier Simons

Simons was also playing out of his most comfortable position and would have much preferred to slot into the midfield two. You could tell he is not totally used to playing in that position and adapting to Tuchel’s right wing back system was hard for Simons. In just two training sessions, Simons came in and impressed Tuchel which led him to playing 65 minutes in his first match for Chelsea. Simons won 3/5 of his ground duels which tells you that he would be a great player to see in midfield. Simons was caught out of position a few times but with the way the game was in the first half this was expected and he made great recovery runs to prevent goal scoring opportunities on numerous occasions. His pace isn’t a main attribute that is usually on show in youth football as he normally operates in midfield, but it was used to full effect here.

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Image Source : Twitter

More minutes could definitely be an option for the Chesterfield game but I hope to see Xavier Simons in his preferred position. Due to the cover we have at centre midfield and right wing back I think the chances of Simons starting another match could be on a lower scale compared to Soonsup-Bell and Harvey Vale. But, a solid performance in a relatively new position could stick in the back of Tuchel’s mind when thinking about his future squads. Chances of seeing Xavier Simons get some more appearances in the first team? 5.5/10 IMO.

Lewis Hall & Charlie Webster

Lewis Hall and Charlie Webster impressed enough after two training sessions to earn a spot on the substitutes bench against Brentford. Lewis Hall has featured in the left wing back position and in midfield this year for the U23’s at just 17-years-old. A place on the bench for Hall is just a testament to his potential and a reward for his elite performances so far this season. With just one senior player natural in the left wing back position (that isn’t currently injured), Hall could definitely be in with a chance of featuring there at some point this season. Webster has featured for the U18’s in all positions around the centre of the pitch and could be of use should more injuries or COVID-19 cases occur in the squad.

The Chesterfield game will be massive in seeing whether Hall and/or Webster can play a part in the senior side for this season. However, I believe that these two definitely have a future at the club due to their different positional capabilities.

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Image Source : Twitter

Overall, this game was massive in showing Tuchel and his staff and also the fans that trusting in the youth is worthwhile. This is an exciting time for people who keep up with the Academy and with the congested January schedule there should definitely be some minutes up for grabs for the youth. Hopefully more chances for players like Dion Rankine, Alfie Gilchrist, Jayden Wareham, Joe Haigh and Josh Brooking, Bryan Fiabema and Xavier Mbuyamba could be on the cards.

Written by Frankie

The academy players who could feature tomorrow…

Chelsea vs Brentford in the Carabao Cup Quarter Finals – both squads fully depleted due to injuries and COVID – most would ask: “who cares?”. I can tell you right now, I definitely care, a lot of people at The Chelsea Spot care, but most importantly the academy players and staff care.

As revealed by ourselves in the last two days on our Twitter page, many academy boys have joined the first team training, with Monday’s sessions including most of the 23s, and Tuesday’s late night session involving Charlie Webster & Jude Soonsup-Bell too (Trevoh Chalobah joined as well).

Understandably, a lot of the fanbase won’t know who half of these names are and there isn’t any shame in that either! So, in this article, I will go through each player who has BEEN PICTURED training in the last two days, and discuss their style of play as well as their chances of making the squad tomorrow (will give a rating out of 10 considering there are 5 spots available).

Josh Brooking

Josh is a RCB (in our setup). This season he’s looked pretty good, with his positional awareness and pace being of real use at RCB to cover any last-man tackles and also his incredible overlapping ability. Many may have seen him get a red card against Manchester United at Stamford Bridge, and even though it was a dangerous tackle, he was actually having an impressive game beforehand and it was nice to see some tenacity. 4/10 chance of making the squad imo.

Alfie Gilchrist

Alfie also a RCB. Unfortunately overhyped by a Chelsea scout in the media recently being compared to John Terry, he still has had an impressive season so far. Last season he was a big player for the U18s and showed his leadership qualities, getting some minutes towards the U23s at the end of the season and this season has managed to captain the FA Youth Cup side and also play a few more U23s game. 5/10 chance of making the squad imo.

Dion Rankine

Dion’s a RWB/RW. Blistering pace, incredible skills and loves a nutmeg. He was kind of inconsistent last season, but he was also chucked around at LWB and couldn’t really settle in a position, so he certainly has an excuse. This season he’s improved with that heavily and is a constant outlet for our team to get in behind. Unfortunately, if Reece and Azpilicueta travel, I’m not sure he’s got much chance of making it, but we’ll have to see. 3/10 imo.

Xavier Simons

Midfielder. If you don’t know about Xavier…then he’s certainly had an interesting story. Moving from Brentford a of couple years ago when they decided to switch from the academy to the B team, he looked a promising player at the time and built a wonderful midfield partnership with Lewis Bate. However, luck wasn’t on his side as he injured his knee and required surgery, and not long after that required surgery in the other knee too! In what would have been a hard place to be mentally, he has come back very strong and become a real leader in this squad – with his qualities still being shown constantly. 5/10 imo.

Lewis Hall

Midfielder/LWB. Been one of our best performers in the academy this season, which is incredibly impressive. Last season featuring for our U18s, he has made the huge jump into the 23s this season and has played with such ease. Originally a midfielder, his driving runs forward have been amazing to watch with his strength and passing being a key part of his game, except this season he’s played more at LWB and has looked brilliant there too. You know how Reece comes into midfield from the RWB role for Chelsea and just shrugs everyone off? Yeah, Lewis does a pretty similar job for our 23s. 7/10 chance of making the squad.

Jay Wareham

Striker. Jay’s an interesting one. He moved from Woking in the Summer to Chelsea, and was always going to find it a proper challenge with Bryan Fiabema and Jude Soonsup-Bell ahead of him. However, he has taken on the challenge really well and whenever got minutes normally found the back of the net. His movement is very impressive, he works hard for the team, and surprisingly despite his height he wins a lot of headers too. If Jude hadn’t returned to training today I would’ve backed him to be in the squad, so I’ll say a 6/10.

Joe Haigh

Attacker. Joe’s that attacking midfielder who just glides with the ball and is a proper joy to watch when he’s on the pitch. As I’ve said before, me and a couple of guys who watch the academy regularly really like to compare his style of play to Joe Cole. Unfortunately for him, the wide attackers are probably going to be pretty stacked with Ziyech, Pulisic, Mount and someone else (who I’ll come onto later) being ahead of him, but in terms of football ability he definitely could be there. 4/10.

Harvey Vale

Attacker/LWB. If Harvey isn’t in the squad, I would be extremely shocked and disappointed. He has trained with the first team already this season and made the bench, when he probably should’ve come on the pitch anyway in the Carabao Cup RO16. He’s been our best player this season in the academy, with him enjoying the wide forward role with his sweet left foot, and him playing at LWB last season also increases his chances of playing tomorrow. I genuinely think we could see him start. 9/10 chance of making the squad, and a 6/10 chance of starting tomorrow.

Jude Soonsup-Bell

Striker. I’m not going into JSB too much, because we’ve done a whole podcast on him with his brother Zac which you can listen to for free! Just click on the hyperlink before, or the Spotify player down below. With no first team striker being available, I also think he has a pretty good chance of making the squad tomorrow. 7/10 chance of making the squad.

One of our best episodes ever…

Charlie Webster

Midfielder. I don’t think there’s any harm in saying Charlie has struggled at times throughout this season for the 23s and has hence played a few more games for the 18s, but then again his performances in the UEFA Youth League have been brilliant and he does also have the likes of George McEachran, Lewis Baker and Xavier Simons ahead of him in the Development Squad which does make life harder for him.

Despite that, the potential is so so clear to see and I don’t think many would disagree by saying he is the most “talented” player in this whole article! His body feints are truly wonderful and is on a very similar level to what we see from Mateo Kovacic on a weekly basis, so I’ve got no doubt Tuchel would have loved him in training today. I think due to his raw talent and a couple midfielders being out he’s definitely got a decent chance of making the squad tomorrow, but it also depends on whether Tuchel prefers someone who he’s seen on both days…I’ll go with a 5/10.

George McEachran

Midfielder. To finish off, we have George. He was a big part of Jody Morris’ midfield back in the day, as he normally had Billy Gilmour and Conor Gallagher infront of him, while George acted as the ‘regista’ and would concentrate on keeping the ball moving about. He’s had experience out on loan which may give him the nod over others for Tuchel, but I’m going to give his chance of making the squad a 5/10 too, so then it’s equally likely for Thomas to choose one of George/Xavier/Charlie 😇.

Maybe there are less than 5 spots available, in which it makes the cut even tougher. There could even be more for all we know! What we do know though, is that the Chelsea boys would’ve loved training with the first team today and would’ve strived on the opportunity which was given to them, and hopefully a couple do the same tomorrow night and make a name for themselves for the right reasons.

If you’ve got any other questions on the academy, make sure to ask us on our social media platforms!

Written by Paree

Podcast: Chelsea 1-1 Everton | COVID-19 Outbreak!

Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter! The Chelsea Spot Podcast

  1. Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter!
  2. Mount shines against Bournemouth & Enzo Fernandez to the Blues?!

In our latest episode of The Chelsea Spot Podcast, Paree (Owner – @CFCParee) , Orlando (Host – @0rland1nho) & Rob (Admin – @CFCRobL) gave thoughts after Chelsea’s disappointing draw with Everton. The boys discussed the big missed chances, Tuchel’s poor in game management, the terrible bench, Chalobah’s importance to the team, Loftus-Cheek’s recent performances and so much more! 

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Podcast: Academy Season Review w/ Joe Tweedie!

Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter! The Chelsea Spot Podcast

  1. Exclusive Academy Transfer Updates w/Scott Trotter!
  2. Mount shines against Bournemouth & Enzo Fernandez to the Blues?!

In another episode of The Chelsea Spot Podcast, Orlando (Host – @0rland1nho) and Paree (Owner – @CFCParee) were joined by Chelsea guru Joe (Guest – JoeTweedie) to discuss last season’s academy success especially with individuals such as Bate, Colwill, Lawrence, Lewis, Livramento. We then also look ahead to next season as to which players should be leaving on loan and who could move up into the 23s permanently. 

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Make sure to check us out on all our social media platforms, including our website, Twitter, Instagram, Spotify, ITunes, Amazon Music, Google and Youtube.