Chelsea reserve team manager Dermot Drummy has criticised the club for not giving academy graduates a fair chance in the first team. He believes the habit of buying experienced professionals is hampering the progress of youngsters at the club.
"It's difficult because Chelsea will buy ready-made players. But the bottom line is you've got to produce a player. There is a second tier now, where the lads like Nathaniel and Josh tend to go out on loan," Drummy told the Mirror.
He was referring to youngsters like Nathaniel Chalobah and Josh McEachran, who came up through the ranks but are now on loan to Watford and Middlesbrough respectively. Drummy claims academy players need to be given a chance, during competitions like the League Cup. He also warned Stamford Bridge officials failure to trust their younger players could lead to the loss of some particularly talented players. At the same time, though, Drummy also acknowledged young players needed to be patient and wait for their break, rather than expecting it will be handed to them.
Drummy has guided the Chelsea youngsters into the final of the 2013 NextGen Series, where they face Aston Villa (read an IBTimes UK preview). And performances such as the thrilling 4-3 win over London rivals Arsenal, in the semi final, and comprehensive defeats of youth teams from European powerhouses like Barcelona and Juventus, suggest Drummy has a significant point.
"The NextGen gives us a barometer of where the lads are because we are playing European football. We know it's not the be-all at this level to beat Barcelona, but we went there and played fantastic football. We are playing very attractive, technical football," he concluded.