Academy Notebook by ChelseaYouth @chelseayouth

Photo: Ben Hoskins/Getty Images


Tammy Abraham

41 goals of his own saw him leave Under-18 football behind and make himself an Under-21 regular. He’ll spend next season there whilst trying to add his name to the list of multiple FA Youth Cup winners and bring home another UEFA Youth League crown.

Ola Aina

Has graduated all youth football, now so it’s Under-21s and beyond for him. Has proven himself in several defensive roles and has elite-level athleticism, but some question marks technically. Was name-dropped by Jose as potentially being Christensen’s replacement as ‘youngster training with the first team’ though.

Nathan Aké

Played too little football last year in hindsight; stayed at Chelsea to fight for a place but it never materialised. Did well at Reading, needs a full season in 15-16, seems destined to be loaned to Middlesbrough.

Mitchell Beeney

Took over from Jamal Blackman as first-choice Under-21 goalkeeper and ended up doing so on merit when Blackman returned. Looks assured and mature. Won’t be threatening the first-team squad any time soon but might be due a loan at some point this season.

Jamal Blackman

Last season was a bit of a waste. Spent half of it on loan at Middlesbrough only to make just one appearance, and wasn’t in the best of shape when he returned to Chelsea, so spent the second half of it playing catch-up just to be ready to make a better fist of it in 15-16. Signed a new long-term deal last year so we’re looking at another loan.

Jeremie Boga

Took the next step in the first half of last season. Injuries hampered that a bit later on so he didn’t get the first team debut he deserved. Will be going on loan to a very good standard next season and it should be the making of him and then some.

Jake Clarke-Salter

A fantastic first season as a scholar; finished as an Under-21 regular and FAYC/UYL winner and a first team post-season tour place. Oozes class and benefits from being left-footed, bringing a natural balance to the centre of defence.

Charlie Colkett

Tremendous player and prospect and I don’t need to say too much about him that has not been written or said before. Will likely be called upon to be an Under-21 leader in the first half of the season and a loan could then follow.

Brad Collins

If Beeney and Blackman go on loan, he’ll be first choice at Under-21 level. Has a few appearances to his name there already, and will get a few more regardless early in the season. Slowly developing into a very reliable and secure option.

Dion Conroy

Missed a lot of time through injury but responded to that well and finished last season with plenty of game time under his belt. Turns 20 soon so should be a candidate for a League One loan.

Fankaty Dabo

Seems to never ever have a bad game. Stick him at either full-back slot and you’ll get a rock solid 7/10 from him on a regular basis. Another candidate for a loan move this season.

Jay Dasilva

Only turned 17 in April but is well on his way to the top. Looks plenty at home in his flirtations with the first team squad in friendlies and could well get a competitive debut next season if all goes well. Another who doesn’t seem to ever play badly.

Alex Davey

Spent most of last season at Scunthorpe on loan in League One and did very well. Played at right-back (which was new to him) as well as centre-back and the loan did what it should have done; attuned himself to men’s football and should be well set for a bigger challenge this coming season.

Islam Feruz

Have no idea what to make of him now; last season was utterly ridiculous. Someone had the bright idea to send him to the Russian Second Division before he bailed out at the last moment, so he then went to OFI Crete in Greece. Had to leave in January because they withdrew from the league by way of protest(!), and went to Blackpool, who sent him back after a month. A Championship loan would be most welcome.

Jordan Houghton

Under-21 captain and ever-reliable midfield leader. Like Dabo and a few other senior Under-21s, should be ready to go on loan now.

Alex Kiwomya

Has a lot going for him but his first brief foray into the professional game at Barnsley last season left more questions than answers, but it was half a dozen games for a club then heading in the wrong direction. Over a full season would come along well and that’ll be the aim now.

Reece Mitchell

Has missed a fair bit of time injured in the last two years and was too old for any of the non Under-21 competitions last season so he’s been off the radar a bit. Played well most of the time, looking useful off either wing, but again, he’s 20 early in the season and you want to see what he can do on loan now.

Charly Musonda

Wonderfully talented and hugely in demand. Will go on loan to a very good team and, if my predictions are right, will be in Belgium’s Euro 2016 squad.

Tika Musonda

Broke his leg at the end of the 2013-14 season, missed all of last season. Won’t be around for too much longer.

Kasey Palmer

Scored worldy after worldy last season and will now be expected to assert himself as an every-week regular in the Under-21s until Christmas. If he can do that he’ll set himself up well for either a cameo first-team debut like Baker got at Derby in 13-14, or a loan to a good standard in the new year. There’s no reason he can’t produce double figures in goals and assists like Baker has done previously; he doesn’t quite play with the same influential command but has so much technical ability.

Kevin Wright

Played just three times last season through injury. Fit now and hopefully gets a lot of time to play next season, although the emergence of Dasilva at left-back doesn’t help. Is 20 mid-season and whilst a loan makes sense, it’s hard to find suitors off the back of so long out.

Photo: Ian Walton/Getty Images


Hubert Adamczyk

Paperwork issues stopped him playing until January. Nifty dribbler with a change of speed and two good feet, will play a lot of Under-18 football this coming season.

Mukhtar Ali

A calm head in central midfield, has solid fundamentals and good for half a dozen goals. Will start the season in the Under-18s but work his way into Under-21 contention as we go on.

Faiq Bolkiah

Brunei royalty. Didn’t play as much as he’d have liked last season but is stronger and fitter this time around and will spend the season with the Under-18s trying to get himself a professional contract.

Isaac Christie-Davies

Same as Ali, except he can play a more attacking game and is more likely to wow you with invention or a spectacular goal. Is a bit stronger and more robust too, so might end up in the Under-21s a half-step quicker by comparison.

Miro Muheim

Very under the radar last season but one to watch. 11 goals from a mainly attacking midfield role was a good return but his all-round game was tidy too . Left footed, strong and quick, skilful, versatile, mature and on the verge of an Under-21 promotion late last season. Could surprise.

Josimar Quintero

Has been with Chelsea for two years but yet to play a second because of a ton of wrangling over paperwork. He’s 18 now though so completely free to move wherever he likes under FIFA’s rules and can therefore get started at Chelsea properly. Diminutive but stocky and a lively dribbler, came through at Barcelona so should have something about him.

Ruben Sammut

A real favourite amongst the coaching staff and it’s not hard to see why. Whack him in defensive midfield and watch him coolly control the game, hold his position with intelligence and a high level of tactical nuance, and he’ll instinctively cover for anyone who gets caught upfield. Was entrusted with big starts in big FAYC/UYL matches and it won’t be long until he’s in the Under-21 squad regularly.

Kyle Scott

Grew in stature both physically and mentally last season and finished up with Under-21 football under his belt. Wants to lead, wants to influence the game, and is very similar to Colkett in a number of ways (except he’s right footed). Will be integral to any prospects of retaining the FAYC.

Ali Suljic

Interesting Swedish centre back prospect who didn’t play as much as he’d have liked but has enough about him to take several leaps forward with regular action this season.

Fikayo Tomori

Tomori’s probably the reason why Suljic didn’t progress; he was outstanding last season and a personal choice as Under-18 player of the season. Played all across the back four (or back three when Joe Edwards used it), developed leadership and responsibility and was so impressive in all of his defensive duties and capacities. An Under-21 regular by the end of the season, he should become a mainstay next term.

Charlie Wakefield

Played in attacking midfield as well as right-back and always impressed whenever he got the chance to play. Quick as anything and quite inventive, he’ll be an Under-18 to start 15-16 but will, like others, be hoping to move on.

Notable New Scholars

Jared Thompson played thirteen times last season and is first choice in goal for England Under-16s; he’s very good … Josh Grant made more appearances as a schoolboy than any other last season and looked supremely capable across the back four, as did … Trevoh Chalobah, who can also play in midfield … Iké Ugbo scored more goals as a schoolboy playing up than Abraham, and had a similar goals to games ratio to Solanke, and promises to score more next season … Cole Dasilva follows big brother Jay into the mainstream attention and can play both full-back slots … Joseph Colley comes from Sweden with huge presence in defence.


We Ain't Got No History's 2015/16 season preview was edited by Joe Tweeds and designed by Graham MacAree. If you've enjoyed the work of the authors who generously donated their time to this project, please share with your friends and consider supporting The Chelsea Foundation as a way of saying thank you.