Speaking exclusively to CaughtOffside after Chelsea’s routine 4-0 win against Morecambe in the FA Cup, Alan Hudson has urged Frank Lampard to hand Billy Gilmour a ‘long run’ in the starting lineup.
Gilmour turned in a wonderful performance against League Two Morecambe, with the 19-year-old playing the entire 90 minutes and turning in a composed display all-around.
Hudson, who made just shy of 200 appearances for Chelsea after coming through the ranks, stated that the Scotsman has a ‘big future’ ahead of him and is ‘going places’ as he’s a ‘fine footballer’.
The under-fire Frank Lampard, who is facing mounting pressure after losing four of the side’s last six Premier League encounters, faces the difficult task of finding who to slot Gilmour into the lineup for.
Hudson admits that Chelsea’s current crop of central midfielder options; N’Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic, Mason Mount, Jorginho and Gilmour are ‘much the same’ in reference to the similarities they share.
Despite that, Hudson believes that Lampard has to make a possibly tough call and hand Gilmour a ‘long’ and deserved ‘run’ as a starter, with the focus on building the midfield around the talent and Kante.
Hudson notes that both are the kind of ‘consistent and reliable’ figures that the side need in the middle of the park, which is evident by Kante’s illustrious career to date and clear from Gilmour’s small sample.
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Hudson believes that Gilmour deserves to start for the Blues, but has admitted that it could be difficult considering the similarities that the side’s current crop of central midfielders share:
“Billy Gilmour has a big future, a fine player in midfield – but the problem is although he is a fine footballer, Frank has a big problem in who he leaves out if Billy is the answer?”
“Playing against Morecambe is different from Manchester City, as you know, but this young man looks to be going places.”
“The problem with Chelsea is they have five midfield players who are much the same, I certainly can’t tell the difference, in my day there was Hollins, the grafter, Hudson, the creator and Cooke, the entertainer, easy to work out.”
“I think Billy should now be given a long run in the team and build the midfield around him and Kante – two players who are more consistent and reliable.”
Hudson added that he he can’t even ‘tell the difference’ between some of their central midfield options, whilst the side he played in for the Blues was more clearly set out in terms of the roles that each were responsible for.
That’s certainly a valid point, the likes of Kovacic and Mount (when he’s deployed in the middle of the park) especially are balanced options, but this has left the side really excelling in key particular areas, which have clearly contributed to their poor form.
Gilmour is very comfortable in possession of the ball, he’s perhaps the exact kind of option that is needed to help those who are struggling in front of him in Timo Werner and Kai Havertz, with the Scotsman also able to take some pressure of creator Hakim Ziyech who has dealt with injuries this term.