Todd Kane has been part of the Chelsea youth academy setup from the under-8 level, and has progressed through the ranks over the years, going on his first loan in the 2012/13 season. By the beginning of this season, he'd been on loan to four different clubs in three years, all in the lower tiers of English football. He had his most successful loan spell(s) at Blackburn Rovers, amassing 41 appearances in his time there.
This year, he opted to play football in the Dutch Eredivisie, but not at our club's preferred destination, Vitesse Arnhem. Instead, he was signed on loan for the whole season by Vitesse's traditional rivals, NEC Nijmegen. Although the Chelsea ship seems to have sailed for the right-back, who is now 22, he reveals in an interview with NEC's media team, that he is still confident that he can make it at his parent club.
The youngster, whom the NEC media team adjudge to be "creating fireworks" in the Netherlands, made an interesting point when asked about the difference between playing in Holland and in England.
"In the Netherlands, (I noticed the differences) especially in the beginning, where I had to get used to (the league). There is more playing football and less playing on each other, and the ball goes around more often. The build up is much more relaxed. In England, the game is insanely fast from the start, full throttle from the start. In addition, I notice that here the focus is solely on football: you train, you eat, you sleep and then you train again. In England, there are a lot more distractions with clubs, parties and things like that. I can concentrate much better here."
"I came to the Netherlands to become a better player. And I'm not just talking about technical and physical aspects. It is also about better understanding of the game."
He even had a little shopping adventure to narrate!
"It (Nijmegen) really feels like a second home. Although I've only been playing at NEC for a few months, it feels as if I've been here for years. But getting used to my new life, this does not always go without a fight. So I went shopping one time, and logically assumed that I'd get some help with the packing, as I would've in England. However, there wasn't a single employee who was going to help me. Now I know much better, and I take my bag."
Talking about his plans for the future, he said,
"You never know what's around the corner. I hope I can one day, play for a big club, no matter where. But my dream, of course, is to be in the starting line-up for Chelsea. And why not? That will succeed!"
I hope just as much as him, that he's able to make the grade here in the near future. Keep working hard, Toddy Kane!