Photo: AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth

Michael Emenalo’s decade long stay at Chelsea has finally come to an end, as he announced his retirement today.

The 52-year-old has enjoyed lots of success in that period, and one of them was in Chelsea’s youth setup.

Finally, Chelsea will now have a youngster break through from the Chelsea academy after a successful two-year loan spell, of which Emenalo is one of the grand patrons of the scheme.

In an interview with Chelsea TV, Emenalo was asked: You are very proud of the loans programme we have here. We saw Andreas Christensen come into the game against Manchester united yesterday and perform so well. Is he a good example there is a clear pathway for young players to make their way into the first team?

He answered: “Absolutely. Andreas, unbeknown to him, gave me a wonderful parting gift yesterday because his performance is indicative of what development is all about. Development equals humility, hard work and timing and Andreas has done all three.

“He’s shown great humility to go on loan and work very hard while he was there and gain the experience which is needed, and the timing is right for him now to step in and show what he’s learnt during those periods of development.”

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Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.