BLACKBURN, ENGLAND - MAY 09: Chelsea players pose with the trophy after victory against Blackburn Rovers during the FA Youth Cup Final 2nd leg match between Blackburn Rovers U18's and Chelsea U18's at Ewood park on May 9, 2012 in Blackburn, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Most of us were fairly excited when Chelsea announced that they would be joining the NexGen Series for this season, as this was an opportunity for our youth to play a few games against some of the top academies in Europe. This morning, NextGen published the initial Chelsea roster for the group stage on it's website. Here are the 24 players that were named:
L. Baker, I. Feruz, W. Figueira, A. Gnahore, J. Houghton, T. Howard, T. Kane, B. Killip, R. Mitchell, A. Nkumu, A. Nditi, P. Bamford, N. Nortey, A. Osmanovic, L. Piazon, G. Saville, I. Seremba, S. Bangura, M. Beeney, J. Blackman, N. Chalobah, A. Christensen, G. Cole, F. Dabo
They aren't particularly clear about how binding this roster is, but at the U18 level I'd assume that more alterations are generally allowed than we see at the UEFA level. The U18 rule is worth noting, as clubs will be allowed two U18 graduates on the pitch at any given time with a 3rd available on the bench. Also worth noting is the inclusion of Todd Kane, Lucas Piazon, Nathaniel Chalobah, and Patrick Bamford in this squad. I'd assume that would mean that all 4 will be staying in London to play with the U21's and will not be heading out on loan. This would be good news for any of you hoping to see those 4 get cameo minutes, as all 4 will likely be candidates for some Capital One Cup minutes now. The full group schedule is not available yet, but the tournament gets underway later this month. Stay tuned...