Lewis Baker is the 30th Chelsea player to be loaned out of Stamford Bridge this season after he completed a temporary switch to Sheffield Wednesday on Thursday.
The club has come in for sharp criticism for its policy of loaning out its players rather than cultivating them first hand at the academy.
Critics have been quick to remind everyone that the last academy success was John Terry – who graduated to first team duties in 2000.
Academy of flops?
Among the high profile names who have been loaned out of Chelsea this year include perpetual flop Fernando Torres, Christian Atsu and forgotten man Gael Kakuta – whose arrival at Stamford Bridge in 2007 earned the club a transfer ban for malpractice.
Thorgan Hazard, Bertrand Traore and Kenneth Omeruo are also amongst the loanees with the majority of the academy not actually being tutored at Chelsea right now – something which could explain the lack of quality emerging from it.
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Some promising prospects
But the long list does also include Ryan Bertrand and Victor Moses who have impressed at Southampton and Stoke City respectively.
While they have shown good quality on their travels it does seem obvious though that they perhaps are not quite Chelsea first team quality and are likely to sign permanent deals with their respective clubs at the end of the current campaign.
So the news of just how extensive Chelsea’s loan list is and the percentage of graduates from the academy who have actually shown real quality in recent years has drawn suggestions for an overall of the youth system at Stamford Bridge.
Look at the other clubs
Other big clubs such as Manchester United and Liverpool have seen the likes of Danny Welbeck and Raheem Sterling rise to international level through constant development on site.
Admittedly Welbeck spent time on loan at Sunderland but he had made first team appearances prior to that and Sir Alex Ferguson always had an eye to use him in the first team.
Some have criticised Jose Mourinho’s decision to opt for purchasing fresh talent rather than cultivate the youth prospects – and the fact that no graduate has even come close to John Terry’s level of ability they could be right to slate him.
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