June 6, 2023

If the Blues handle the challenging matches against Manchester United and Newcastle at the end of the season, they can pave the way for Mauricio Pochettino. remaining
Since taking over as Chelsea’s interim manager, Frank Lampard has maintained a consistent message. He should only get through the remainder of the season rather than investing time in player development or considering the club’s long-term destiny.

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With only two games left, Chelsea is almost there, but there isn’t much to look forward to. Even if the top two teams in the league had played in the previous month, finishing this perilous season is still difficult. Before concluding with a home match against Newcastle, there will be a second away journey in four days, this time to Manchester.

Both teams are playing for league places, a Champions League fate, and, most importantly, the satisfaction of their supporters. None of this belongs to Chelsea. If they were to finish the season in typical 2022–23 fashion with no points, subtracting six points from the last games would not make much of a difference.
Of course, pride is at stake for Lampard and the other players. However, it has been clear during the difficult periods that some of the group have no future at the club after this season. Fans have organized protests against their players, demonstrating their disconnection from and mistrust of the decision-makers. There is cautious optimism that over the summer, the situation might shift.
Chelsea has found a manager in Mauricio Pochettino who can rebuild the team and be ruthless in getting rid of players who don’t match his vision. When the transfer market opens in a month, it is anticipated that the club’s senior players would be cleared out.
Lampard has an opportunity to get things moving on the right path before that. These games can start the record even if there is nothing of value to be gained from them. Games played before that are in the same vein as those being prepared for the upcoming season.
Chelsea may still earn an additional £2 million by placing 11th, but that sum pales in comparison to what might be possible if some bigger, more audacious decisions were made. Consider Lewis Hall’s two straight starts. In the long run, his minutes are considerably more advantageous to Chelsea and Pochettino than, say, starting Christian Pulisic or Hakim Ziyech as a substitute wing-back.
It is for this reason that there have been so many angry voices when those two, and Joao Felix in particular, have been given playing time recently but Noni Madueke and Mykhailo Mudryk have not. Many people have no doubts about who is remaining and who is leaving in these situations. It makes Lampard’s decisions confusing, especially given the paltry financial reward of three points.
In the past, Chelsea has experienced problems related to this historical topic. The lack of a pathway provided to younger players even in the closing games of a season has been embarrassing and detrimental, as Twitter user Chelsea Youth noted. For instance, in the final home game of the previous season, both Ross Barkley and Kennedy received playing time. Less than three months later, both players quit the team.
While Saul Niguez, a loanee, played, there was an opportunity to offer some of the young academy players, like Harvey Vale or perhaps Hall himself, a chance. Marc Guehi, a current Crystal Palace center defender, didn’t participate on the previous game’s final day but other loanees did. Chelsea has failed to provide consolation to individuals in the young set up at the most convenient time to convey a message of possible advancement.
Their refusal to sign new contracts contributed to the ultimate sales of Tino Livramento and Guehi before either of them made an appearance for the club. Who is to blame for them?
This time, there is even less justification for not using Hall and his teammate Carney Chukwuemeka from the England Under-20s. Both individuals saw some playing time after being retained from their respective youth World Cup group stages to serve as first-team backup players. Since the new year, Chukwuemeka in particular has been excluded from the proceedings.
Moving into the summer, he is now a loan possibility for football. London is aware of this, but there is little harm that can be done if he is allowed to start in both of the remaining games. If Pochettino succeeds to put on a show, it might be the difference in his demeanor upon his return for the summer, his confidence, or even his playing standards.
The young players, who are more marketable than the older pros on greater salaries, should be given playing time since their potential future value will increase and much outweigh the £2 million per position that is acquired by winning games.
This also implies that Chelsea is weakening rather than improving their team by adding younger players. The more seasoned, higher-paid players have constantly struggled in their worst season in a generation, but Hall has consistently shone when given the opportunity.
Cobham’s Best is a terrific method to achieve just this, and the proof is in the pudding at a time when supporters are longing for a cause they can support. Despite his limitations, Tammy Abraham was a fan favorite, and many people would be pleased to see him play in Blue once more. At Stamford Bridge, the phrase “Reece James, he’s one of our own” is frequently heard, and it is obvious that Ruben Loftus-Cheek is admired by many people.
The players who have been so long disregarded at this point in the season, even though there appears to be nothing to play for, would enjoy these minutes and chances. For many players in the development system, participating in a competitive match at Old Trafford is not a realistic possibility, and they will never play there under less pressure than this one.
Not giving the younger players a chance not only fails to improve their reputation but also has a ripple effect on other young players who may start to look elsewhere earlier. Tudor Mendel-Idowu, a promising youth attacker, is slated to depart the team before he has ever been close to making his debut, despite being one of the top players in his age group.
Players like Mendel-Idowu or Livramento may be more likely to commit to the club, take the loans away, and dedicate themselves to the cause if there is a precedent set—which there hasn’t been since Lampard’s initial youth injection in 2019—than to look for more immediate options elsewhere.

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There isn’t enough awareness of Cobham for a club with its depth and caliber. The warnings have always been present but are now becoming a more recurrent message. By giving opportunities to individuals who have strived and worked for a Chelsea debut, rather than giving pity minutes to others who are on their way out, Lampard can add another small piece to the Chelsea mosaic and heritage.

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