Much like the season overall, Chelsea's record of youth integration has been a mixed bag this year. Callum Hudson-Odoi played a big role, but Ethan Ampadu did not. Ruben Loftus-Cheek played a big role eventually, too, but Andreas Christensen did not. Beyond those four, no new faces entered the conversation either, unless we count Marc Guehi making a bench appearance on the final day.
Guehi is one of several young players who joined Chelsea for the friendly tonight in Boston, so perhaps we'll get to see a few of them in action.
Chelsea captain César Azpilicueta is certy eager to see them given the chance to feature today.
“It is very exciting to have them back in the case of Reece [James] and Trevoh [Chalobah] who have come back from their loans, and we also have Conor [Gallagher] who was named Player of the Year in the Academy and has been playing with the Under-19s and the Under-23s.”
“We have Marc [Guehi] who was on the bench in the last Premier League game and also played in the Under-19s version of the Champions League, and Ike [Ugbo] for the last couple of months has been training with us regularly, so it is an opportunity for them to be part of the team and travel with us, and to be involved in a game.”
While the match has greater meaning than just football, ome complaints were made about its timing — only a few days after our last Premier League match of the season, and with an Europa League final still to play. But it can still be helpful as a training exercise as well as a showcase for the aforementioned youngsters.
“We have the senior players and we are approaching our most important game of the season, the final in Baku, and we are focused on keeping having good feelings and being a good team and keeping fit, because there are still nearly two weeks to the final.”
“This game is the last game before the big game so we have to use it in the right way. We are facing an opponent who are also involved in their league at the moment so hopefully we can do what we have been doing this season and hopefully improve the team with new members in the squad, and we are very happy to have them with us.”
-César Azpilicueta; Source: Chelsea FC
So say we all.