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Former Chelsea defender Mario Melchiot has been impressed with the progress of Chelsea youngster Reece James.
The 20-year-old has impressed this season for the Blues after a loan spell with Wigan last season and Melchiot has admitted that the young right-back is the real deal.
Asked about how good Reece James is, former Blues defender Melchiot told the Sports Breakfast: “Very good!
“I’ve watched him closely and I’ve see him getting better.
“We all know about him going forward, his crossing and how good he is.
“But his game against Zaha, who is arguably one of the best wingers in this league and if you play against him one-on-one he can beat you, James kept him quiet for 90 minutes. Zaha didn’t get anything.
“When I saw that, I knew he was the real deal and he’s getting better and better.
“And now he’s signed a new deal for five and a half years, it’s incredible.
“Going to Wigan, I was at Wigan myself, and becoming their best player and then coming back to Chelsea, waiting for his moment and then being capable of pushing people who have so much experience onto the bench and start ahead of them – it’s great.”
James signed a new five-and-a-half-year contract, worth £100,000-a-week.