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Chelsea wonderkids who failed to fulfill their potential

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Chelsea wonderkids
  • The list of young prodigies who caught the eyes of football fans at Chelsea is very long
  • However, not everyone makes it to the top level after graduating from the academy
  • Lucas Piazon was one of the most hyped Chelsea wonderkids in the early 2010s but nowadays only a few fans remember his name

How many Chelsea wonderkids can you remember? The list of young prodigies who caught the eyes of football fans at Chelsea is very long. While some such as Jimmy Greaves, John Terry, Mason Mount and Reece James have fulfilled their potential, there are many others who never made the grade.

Today we are going to take a look at Chelsea wonderkids who were dubbed the future stars but never actually became great as predicted.

1. Gael Kakuta

Gael Kakuta

Gael Kakuta. Photo/

It’s quite sad how Gael Kakuta‘s Chelsea career subsided quickly. This is a player Chelsea risked it all to sign and were even handed a transfer ban after signing him, although the punishment was later dropped after an appeal.

Kakuta joined the Blues as a 16-year-old in 2007 after impressing at Lille. He was highly rated at the time and many believed that he was the next big thing at the club, especially after his debut in 2009. However, things never went as expected with the French-born winger who now plays for the DR Congo national team at international level.

Chelsea loaned Kakuta to several clubs, including Fulham, Bolton, Dijon, Vitesse, Lazio and Rayo Vallecano. However, he didn’t get his form at any of those clubs and was eventually offloaded to Sevilla in 2015. After spells with different clubs in Europe and China, the 32-year-old now plays for French side Amiens.

2. Josh McEachran

Chelsea’s academy has developed several talents over the past few years. As a result, they have been a force to be reckoned with in youth competitions such as the FA Youth Cup, which they have won seven times in the past twelve years.

This dominance was started by the Josh McEachran led team that triumphed in 2010, breaking the club’s 50-year hoodoo in the competition. McEachran was the standout performer in the team and he was seen as the next Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge. He was handed his senior team debut at the age of 17 and was hyped by the Blues fans.

However, he couldn’t find regular playing time and was loaned out to various clubs, including Watford, Wigan Athletic and Vitesse. After failing to get his career off the ground, he was eventually released in 2015, signing with Brentford. Now aged 31, McEachran is playing for League One club Oxford United.

3. Lucas Piazon

Lucas Piazon

Lucas Piazon. Photo/ Sky Sports.

Lucas Piazon was one of the most hyped Chelsea wonderkids in the early 2010s. He joined Chelsea youth team in 2011 from Sao Paulo and received promotion to the senior team after just one year.

However, playing time was the main obstacle on his way and he was loaned out to several clubs. Some of the clubs which hosted the Brazilian winger include Malaga, Vitesse, Eintracht Frankfurt and Reading. In total, he was loaned out to seven different clubs before eventually leaving on a permanent deal in 2021. He is currently playing for Portuguese side Braga. Piazon was Chelsea’s longest serving player before leaving the club.

4. Bertrand Traore 

To be honest, Bertrand Traore is one of those Chelsea wonderkids who have done great with their careers after leaving the club.

When Traore joined Chelsea in 2014 from French club Auxerre, he was one of the best young players in the world. He had an outstanding performance in early 2016, netting four goals in five matches, and was hyped to be the next big thing at Chelsea.

However, it didn’t quite work out for him at Stamford Bridge and he was sold to Lyon in 2017. The 28-year-old enjoyed several impressive seasons in France before being sold to Villareal where he is currently playing.

5. Nathaniel Chalobah

Nathaniel Chalobah

Nathaniel Chalobah. Photo/ YouTube.

Now aged 29, Nathaniel Chalobah is one of Chelsea wonderkids the world has forgotten about. He was promoted to the senior team in 2012 after impressing at the academy. However, the defensive midfielder struggled to break into the starting XI and was eventually released in 2017 after loan spells at clubs such as Nottingham Forest, Burnley, Reading and Napoli.

Nathaniel, who is Trevoh Chalobah‘s older brother, is currently playing for West Bromwich Albion.

Abraham Odhiambo is an avid sports fan who loves to write about football, boxing and wrestling. He's a big supporter of Manchester United. He's pursuing a bachelor's degree in Communication and Media at Egerton University.

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