Chelsea have reportedly called up Charlie Holland, 14, for first-team training before their Premier League clash at Crystal Palace on Monday (February 12).
The youth team academy academy was allowed to train with the first team, as per Express, following his impressive performances at the club’s Cobham academy. Interestingly, the teenager trained with veteran defender Thiago Silva, 25 years his senior.
Holland also trained with the first team under caretaker boss Frank Lampard in May last year after he led the Blues‘ U-14 side to a 5-0 win over Fulham in the final of the Albert Phelan Cup south.
It’s pertinent to note that following an expensive summer overhaul, Blues boss Mauricio Pochettino is assembling a youthful side, with only a handful of players in his squad being over 25.
However, that has also contributed to the team’s nconsistent results, especially in the league, where the Blues have suffered consecutive heavy losses to slip out of the top-10.
Following a 4-1 loss at Liverpool, Pochettino’s side suffered a 4-2 home reverse to Wolverhampton Wanderers, leaving them 11th in the standings, 15 points off fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur in the fourth and final UEFA Champions League spot.
Chelsea vs Crystal Palace: A few tidbits
Chelsea have dominated their recent meetings with Crystal Palace, winning their last 13 meetings across competitions – including 12 times in the Premier League.
They’re looking to beat an opponent 13 straight times in the league for the first time. Their 79% success rate against Palace is the best in the Premier League between any two teams.
Chelsea have been imperious in Cup competitions this season despite their travails in the league. After winning 3-1 at Aston Villa in an FA Cup fourth-round replay last week, they are into the last-16 of the competition for the 11th time in 12 years.
Cole Palmer (12 goals, seven assists), Raheem Sterling (seven goals, five assists) and Nicolas Jackson (nine goals, two assists) are the only three Blues players with at least 10 goal contributions across competitions this season.