Chelsea News: Club captain Cesar Azpilicueta speaks on the importance of setting an example for the youngsters
What's the story?
According to the club captain, it's important for the senior players to lead by example and thereby set standards for the youngsters coming in.
In case you didn't know...
The Blues squad is presently training hard in Dublin, Ireland ahead of a couple of friendlies scheduled next week. New boss Frank Lampard has hit the ground running and has taken along a squad of 22 people to train and kick-start the pre-season.
While experienced stars such as Azpilicueta, Pedro and Willy Caballero have flown to Ireland, a host of starlets including Academy Player of the Year Conor Gallagher, Ethan Ampadu, Lewis Baker, Trevoh Chalobah and Fikayo Tomori have traveled with the team.
The heart of the matter
Lampard, just like in his Derby days, is expected to infuse a host of fresh, young talent into the Chelsea setup. And what can be better than having a leader like Cesar Azpilicueta, who takes care of the entire team, brings the players together and gives it all for the badge?
Speaking to the club's official website post the second day of training, he said:
"I’m a senior member of the team and it’s down to people like myself to lead by example, to set the standards for the young players to follow and you have to show this on the pitch with the way you play, but also with how you conduct yourself off it too."
Heaping praise on the quality that the youngsters possess, he continued:
"We have a lot of good youngsters here at Chelsea, many of them have come away with us on this trip and it’s a good chance for them to come in and impress.
We have to help these guys when they step up to first-team level because you have to remember, we were all young players starting out once. It’s not easy for them but that’s why we integrate them into the squad and make the young players feel as comfortable as possible."
Chelsea take on Bohemians and St. Patrick's Athletic on 11 and 13 July respectively, where a large pool of these youngsters will be given an opportunity to impress and make the stage their own.