English championship club Brentford announced the signing of Josh McEachran on a four-year-deal from Premier League champions Chelsea. The move between the clubs and the player was sealed for an undisclosed fee. The midfielder was once touted as the next big thing from the Chelsea academy but failed to deliver on the promising start he made with Chelsea youth as many have done before.
McEachran spent the whole of last season on loan at Vitesse Arnhem as a number of other Chelsea players have done before him. Playing in the Dutch league, he gathered 3 assists in 21 appearances for Vitesse.
Having been at Chelsea since 2001, he made 22 appearances for the senior Blues side, the first of the few coming in a 2010 Champions League match against Zilina. In the same year the Chelsea youth team won the FA Youth Cup with McEachran a regular in that side. He was also a permanent fixture in an English U-17 team that won the European Championship that summer.
As is expected of most young players at Chelsea, McEachran spent a good part of the last 5 years with the Blues on loan at several clubs including Swansea, Middlesbrough, Watford and Wigan before last season’s spell with Vitesse. Now, aged 22, the once promising midfielder has left the Blues on a permanent deal to Premier League aspirants Brentford.
The championship club’s first team coach Marinus Dijkhuizen seemed pleased with his new signing. He told the club website: “Josh is a versatile midfield player who can play in a holding role and as a playmaker. He was a big talent at Chelsea and now I look forward to working with him and our coaching staff in order to take Josh on to the next level.
“Although he played at Vitesse last season, he has good experience of English football and will be able to fit into our playing style very quickly.”
Chelsea’s failure to promote their youth talent up to the senior side has been no secret. The last academy product to make it into the senior squad was none other than the captain John Terry himself. The other Chelsea youngster to have played regularly for the first team is Nemanja Matic but he had to take the route through Benfica to make the cut.
However, they do have a number of players out on loan every season. This season the process has already begun for the club with Mario Pasalic heading out on loan to Monaco seemingly as part of the Falcao loan to Chelsea.
Despite Jose Mourinho’s insistence that youth players like Ruben Loftus-Cheek will get their shot at the first team next season, reports have persistently linked him awat from the club on a loan deal.