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Chelsea youngster Reece James caught the eye as he excelled while on loan playing for Wigan last season in the Championship. He made the Championship team of the season and featured predominantly in the Wigan first eleven, and was arguably their best player.
Wigan tried to keep James after the end of last season, but new Blues boss Frank Lampard is a manager who isn’t scared to give youth the chance, and Lampard assured James that he was going to be a part of the Chelsea team this season.
Lampard wants the young 19-year-old right-back to rival club captain Cesar Azpilicueta in the right-back position this season, and the highly-rated youngster has now revealed that Lampard has assured him of playing time this season.
“At the end of the day, if you’re a footballer, your job is to play,” James told The Independent.
“I would always prefer to play than sit around. If I’m not, I’m not going to be happy, but there are certain situations where you have to be patient. Frank Lampard is a club legend; he’s someone
“I’ve always looked up to. If a manager believes in youth and believes in you then, eventually, you know the chance will come. Ever since I’ve been at Chelsea, my dream has been to become a first-team player.”
Azpilicueta was at fault for two of the goals Chelsea conceded against Manchester United and the Spaniard’s speed seems to have left him, as he couldn’t track back on time.
Lampard has now revealed that young right-back Reece James will have a huge role to play when he returns from injury.
“We have some top players out injured coming back soon. Reece James is going to be a big player for us in our squad,” Lampard said.
“Four mistakes for the goals. We have to be self-critical for that. We controlled the first half hour but made some poor decisions.
“We should be in the lead at the break. It is easier for them to play at 2-0 3-0. I can’t look at it and be happy.
“They have pace and if you turn over the ball and allow them to run in behind you they can hurt you.
“We were comfortable in the first half. But there are lessons there. You can’t make mistakes at this level. But if you look at the game, it is not a 4-0 game.
“We are missing internationals and big players but I don’t want that to be an excuse. We were competing for long periods.
“We made four mistakes and they put them away. It is a reality check for us all.”