Chelsea sign 20-year-old American defender Matt Miazga as youth players question signing
Chelsea have completed the signing of defender Matt Miazga from New York Red Bulls, according to the club’s official website. The 20-year-old centre-back signed a four-and-a-half-year contract that will see him stay at the club till the summer of 2020.
“I am very happy to sign for Chelsea, a world-famous club with a reputation for major success. I am delighted to be in the Premier League, the best league in the world, and can’t wait to meet my team-mates and get going.
“I am still at the beginning of my career but I believe this is the place to develop and learn from some of the best players in the world.” – Matt Miazga
Miazga is a product of the Red Bulls Academy where he joined seven years ago. A young prodigy, he signed his professional contract at 17 and made his debut as an 18-year-old for the New York side.
Standing at 6’4”, Miazga was a crucial player at the back as the Red Bulls ended the 2015 MLS regular season with the best record (60 points from 34 games). The team were unlucky to lose out in the playoffs to Columbus Crew.
Miazga has also played for the US Men’s National Team (USMNT) for the U-18, U-20 and U-23 teams. He was rewarded with a senior debut last year when USA played in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers. He was earlier eligible to play for Poland since his parents are from the European nation.
The American defender is said to be a good reader of the game and is comfortable with the ball at his feet. However, Blues will be concerned with his disciplinary record, having been sent off three times in the MLS since he made his debut in 2013.
While most Chelsea youth players are sent out on loan, Blues boss Guus Hiddink has said that Miazga will be in the senior squad for the rest of the season.
“He's a young player, a promising player,” Hiddink said of Miazga. “Let's see if he can get himself to the high demands of this club and the Premier League.”
Chelsea youth players question Miazga’s signing
While Miazga must be over the moon after signing for a Premier League club, the Blues’ youth players are not too impressed. Two Chelsea Academy players Josi Quintero and Kasey Palmer questioned the signing, asking U-21 defender Jake Clarke-Salter for his thoughts.
Clarke-Salter has been at the London club since he was a nine-year-old and is yet to get a look-in at Stamford Bridge.