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Chalobah: Academy philosophy helping me succeed at Reading

Alex Livesey/Getty Images

After the struggles of last season, it's great to see Chalobah finally finding his feet again in the Championship. Two years ago, he looked too good for the league, but one of the problems with young players is their inconsistency, and he didn't come anywhere near that with Nottingham Forest or Middlesbrough, and his loan to Burnley this season went similarly poorly.

But at Reading? He's a lot happier, and is crediting some of his success to his training at multiple positions at Chelsea:

I just like playing football, it’s something I enjoy doing. It’s not something to be angry about if the manager tells you to play somewhere else.

I think all of that back in the years has paid off so when the manager asks you play left-back, you know those you learned when you were younger can help you understand the game. You know you can go in and play there.

The only thing is if I’m asked to play in goal I might struggle a little bit because I don’t know much about being a keeper!

Source: GetReading

Teaching your prospects a number of different positions isn't just about finding the one in which they're the best fit, it's about forcing them to experience and become comfortable with a huge variety of tactical situations. Versatility allows in-game adaptation without outright substitutions, and is also extremely useful for players on the edge of the squad -- like, say, loanees -- who're looking for a chance to break through.

As Chalobah's previous loans show, there's a fine line between success and failure, and every little edge counts.

PS: I like that GetReading's website name is also a command.

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