Tammy Abraham has described Chelsea’s transfer ban as “exciting” as he believes it gives the club’s youngsters a unique opportunity to prove their worth, with Frank Lampard now in official discussions over the vacant manager’s role at Stamford Bridge.
The Blues are currently unable to sign players until January 2020 after Fifa handed them a transfer ban and Abraham is adamant that this is exactly what Chelsea’s youngsters needed in order for them to break into the first team.
Does transfer ban give Chelsea’s youth hope? Five things to know…
- Chelsea were handed a transfer ban in February for breaching regulations regarding transfers of young players.
- The club had an appeal rejected by FIFA in April, and have since lodged a further appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
- Chelsea had 41 players out on loan this season, including highly rated youngsters such as Abraham, Mason Mount and Reece James.
- Abraham scored 25 goals at Aston Villa, firing the club to promotion to the Premier League.
- He has only made three senior appearances for Chelsea during his 15-year spell at the club.
Abraham has been at Chelsea since he was seven and is eager to show the next manager at Chelsea what he is made of.
“There is a great chance for us young players so we must get our heads down in training and go for it at Chelsea. I have already been talking to the club about pre-season. I’m going to have a couple of weeks and then come back hitting the ground running,” Abraham told the Guardian.
“This year is the most important year for us. It is now or never. There will never be a better time to play the youngsters.
“Of course the transfer ban is probably not what the club wanted but for us it is exciting. I am excited and I am sure the rest of the players are.”
Frank Lampard, the current favourite to take the top job at Stamford Bridge, has officially been given permission by Derby County to speak to Chelsea.
A club statement read: “With pre-season fast approaching for both clubs it is hoped this will allow Chelsea to swiftly conclude their discussions.”
Lampard relied heavily on youth last season during an impressive debut season in management in the Championship.
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Lampard’s assistant, Jody Morris, was involved in the youth set-up at Chelsea for five years before joining Lampard at Derby and could also be in line to join the Blues’ senior coaching staff.
And, given Chelsea’s lack of striking options and Abraham’s form over the past three seasons, the 22-year-old may well be called upon for the upcoming year if Lampard’s faith in youth continues in SW6.
The players hoping to make an impression
Chelsea had an impressive pool of players who were out on loan last season.
James excelled at Wigan Athletic, Mount and Fikayo Tomori were crucial for Derby in their run to the play-off final and Kurt Zouma proved himself as an assured Premier League defender at Everton.
That’s not to mention the likes of Michy Batshuayi and Victor Moses, both of whom have played in the Champions League for Chelsea already.
Abraham and co will surely use the rise of Ruben Loftus-Cheek as inspiration. Following an impressive loan spell at Crystal Palace, the midfielder is now viewed as one of the most valuable players at the club.
Having faced criticism about their loan policy in recent years, it appears Chelsea’s reluctance to let players leave the club permanently may now pay off.