One of the good things to come out of Chelsea’s charity friendly against the New England Revolution on Wednesday — other than the money raised of course — was the involvement of a few young players, including Reece James, Connor Gallagher, and Trevoh Chalobah. While it would’ve been also great to see Marc Guehi and Ike Ugbo get up off the bench, especially as Jorginho and Pedro played the full 90 minutes, I suppose we should try to concentrate on the positives and be thankful for what we did get.
James himself certainly was thankful for what proved to be his Chelsea senior debut.
“I’ve always had that dream of coming on and playing for my boyhood club, and I am thankful I got to fulfil it. It’s a dream come true.
“It is great involvement for me, getting to play with players I have watched as I have been coming through at Chelsea, players who have won Champions Leagues, World Cups.
“I found out a few days before I would be coming out on the trip and I was really excited. I just take in my stride really. I remain focused and now I will try and help the squad build up to the Europa League final.”
Since the match was just a friendly, it doesn’t quite count as a full debut, but we can ensure it doesn’t go to waste by building on it as we move forward this summer and into next season.
Reece had a stellar season on loan at Wigan Athletic in the Championship, and is quite clearly ready for a top flight challenge. In his brief 12-minute cameo on Wednesday, as much as anything can actually be deduced from the final dozen minutes of football in a charity friendly, he looked immediately at home and showed composure in defending and impetus and quality in attack. One of his crosses should’ve resulted in Chelsea’s fourth goal in fact.
He’s ready for more.
“It was a very good season at Wigan. Playing week in week out at a decent level was a good achievement. This is the icing on the cake and hopefully it’s just the start.”
-Reece James; source: Chelsea FC
So say we all. (Easiest way: sell Zappacosta, keep James.)