Former-Tottenham boss slams 'madness' of £1.7m Chelsea starlet deal

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Former-Tottenham boss David Pleat has urged clubs to stop the "madness" of handing multi-million pound contract to teenage players as reports emerge that Chelsea are set to offer 17-year-old Ruben Loftus-Cheek a £1.7m deal, according to the Daily Mirror.

The young Chelsea midfielder is set to be offered a £1.7m contract, according to recent reports, as the Blues look to tie down their academy's hottest prospect.

But Pleat has warned youngsters against signing such mega-money deals, at least in the short-term, as it could result in greater harm in the future and risk allowing agents greater influence within the game.

Pleat said in the Daily Mirror: "The whole thing is crazy. The scramble for the best schoolboys, fuelled by agents, leads to wholly inflated earning figures.

"It gives youngsters a false sense of perspective - both about football and about life. It is madness. I remember when there used to be a cap on what you earned until you played your first professional game.

"Nowadays a kid won't sign on as an apprentice for a club until he is guaranteed 'x' amount of money. There should be a limit on what clubs offer."

Loftus-Cheek is yet to play a first-team minute for Chelsea, but he's rated highly at the club, and played an important role as the Chelsea under-19s reached the NextGen Series final - only to lose to Aston Villa 2-0 last weekend.

The England under-17 youth international was excellent in the Chelsea run to the final, and will be hoping to make the step up to the first-team next term. But he's currently embroiled in a contract row between rival agents who dispute the £1.7m deal, with the FA set to step in to resolve the issue.

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