Chelsea right-back Reece James has admitted it’s great to see more young players making it into the first-team this season under new manager Frank Lampard.
The 19-year-old was one of many academy stars to shine for the Blues in midweek as they thrashed Grimsby 7-1 in the Carabao Cup, with Lampard showing plenty of faith youth in a way that his predecessors have not.
Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount, Fikayo Tomori and Callum Hudson-Odoi are among other exciting prospects coming through at the moment, and James suggested after the game that this feels like a positive change at Stamford Bridge.
Discussing his role in the Chelsea first-team after returning from a loan spell at Wigan last season, James says he didn’t necessarily expect he’d get a chance with the west London giants after watching how well they did last term.
However, he says seeing his team-mates get a chance under Lampard has given him a boost, suggesting it could also do the same for other youngsters waiting for their breakthrough.
“At the time I wasn’t sure because the team did well last season, winning the Europa League,” he is quoted by Goal.
“I decided to take it as it comes really and when I found out I was staying, I was obviously happy. I’m glad I’m getting my chance.
“If you look at the past few years there probably isn’t as many who have played. Out there today there were four or five of us that got on the pitch. That’s great for the academy. It shows the level and standard there is very good.
“Of course, looking at other young players getting a chance gives you a boost.”