Saturday, 25 April 2020

Chelsea had five national team captains at one point - Michael Beale

Chelsea had five national team captains at one point - Michael Beale
Former Chelsea development centre officer Michael Beale has revealed some truth about academy players not graduating into the first team set up in the past.

After Roman Abramovich took over Chelsea, the Russian billionaire brought in lots of stars to the club before Jose Mourinho was appointed meaning the special one had a lot of high ranking players to pick from and the call and pressure for success were also much on the Portuguese international.

Speaking in an interview with Goal, Michael Beale reveals why Jose Mourinho wasn't at fault for the young players as at then not having a place in the first and that in the other way round, Jose Mourinho actually helped them to develop.

'We brought in Mourinho as manager and then we went from Battersea Park and Harlington to Cobham, which was an unbelievable training ground,'  Beale said

'So, it was easy to recruit for Chelsea because they were a club people were looking at and very excited about.'

'The problem for the young players trying to break through at the time was that Chelsea were one of the best teams in the world. They had five national team captains at one point.'

'These guys were kings; they weren't normal footballers. They are all legends now: Michael Ballack, Frank Lampard, Claude Makelele, William Gallas, John Terry, Ashley Cole, Branislav Ivanovic, Arjen Robben, Didier Drogba, Nicolas Anelka, and Florent Malouda.'

'But having these names at the club inspired the likes of Abraham, Mount, and Loftus-Cheek to join. On top of that, Neil Bath ran a fantastic academy and had a big vision for the academy.'

'Ruben Loftus-Cheek's age group was the first that I coached at 9 or 10. We also had Ola Aina, Dom Solanke, Jake Clarke-Salter, Fikayo Tomori, Reece James, and Rhian Brewster at seven or eight. I coached Josh McEachran too, as well as Declan Rice, Eddie Nketiah, and Jeremie Boga.'

' I used to pick Tammy Abraham up from Peckham at his house and drop him off at training in Battersea. Wow, there were so many stars to speak about.'

'I've got fond memories of knowing the Chelsea lads from six or seven years old. When I look back, I loved every minute and now it is clear to me that we were doing good work.'

'I think over the years it has been difficult for people like Neil Bath because players have not always been given the opportunity. Now, though, it must be fantastic for him and the players, because, in the past, they would have had a lot of sleepless nights.'

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