The next generation of stars emerging from the Chelsea Academy include young Harvey Vale, who made his senior debut this past season, collecting five appearances in total, including a start against Brentford in the League Cup quarterfinals.
He was rewarded for his efforts with a call-up to the England U19 national football team for this summer’s U19 Euros held in Slovakia. And so far, the tournament’s going quite swimmingly for the young lions, with a perfect group stage (three wins from three, seven goals scored, zero conceded) setting them up for a semifinal matchup against Italy on Tuesday.
Vale, deployed in an attacking role on the left flank (wing/wing-back) captained the team in the first two games, a 2-0 win over Austria and a 4-0 win over Serbia, before getting the night off in the 1-0 win against Israel.
Fellow Academy standout, defender Bashir Humphreys, has started the last two games, while Academy goalkeeper Teddy Sharman-Lowe got the nod against Israel, as did former Chelsea prospect Sam Iling-Junior.
England last reached the final in 2017 (with the last two editions, 2020 and 2021 canceled due to COVID-19), when a team led by Mason Mount and Dujon Sterling (and Jay Dasilva) beat Portugal, 2-1 to claim the trophy. That was England’s first win in this competition since 1993.