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Youngest at Cobham

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Very little can be made of Chelsea’s transfer business in recent years. However, their hunt for building the best football academy in the world hasn’t faded away even under the new ownership.

Yes, much hype has been built around their signings of talented wunderkinds from across the globe. But this time it is a bit different, with the Blues tying down probably their best youth player in decades to a new contract.

Frankie Runham, a 16-year-old attacking midfielder has pledged his future with Chelsea by signing his first professional contract. His contract was due to expire this summer, but Todd Boehly and Co have got the job done and the English Youth international will stay put at Stamford Bridge.

Even after his heroics at both club and country level, not much has been talked about Runham. Here is a breakdown of his short career so far and how good a player he is.

 

Frankie Runham’s analysis

It is quite surprising that Frankie Runham’s exploits haven’t reached out to the fans out there. The Chelsea Academy star has been at the club since the age of eight and had gotten the attention of very few scout experts.

His most notable contribution has been the screamer he scored against the Danish youth team of FC Nordsjaelland. Runham scored this banger in the Future Cup – a tournament specially made for youth teams around Europe and one which is organised by Dutch giants Ajax.

The Chelsea prodigy finished the tournament with a goal and an assist. Runham was also named in the Team of the Tournament and named the Player of the Tournament as well. A very special feat considering the heavy pool of talent that participated in that competition.

That’s not it though. Runham in the process of his multiple heroics so far, also became the youngest-ever English scorer in UEFA Youth League history at 15. He has a goal to his name in four appearances in that tournament.


While he is yet to open his account on the domestic level at Chelsea, his two assists in 11 U18 Premier League appearances is a big achievement. This is considering he is just 16 and punching weights well above his limits.

 

Frankie Runham’s Chelsea future

Frankie Runham has been without a shadow of a doubt, the best Chelsea player at the academy level. He has continued to impress coaches around him and new manager Mauricio Pochettino may well be made aware of his exploits so far.

An important player for the Chelsea U18s, Runham has been in the form of his life and that can be seen while he has been playing with an older age group. The English Youth player had caught the eye of experts at Newcastle and were also close to agreeing on a deal with Runham.

Chelsea moved swiftly though and made sure they don’t lose their key asset to a Premier League rival. His contract was set to expire after the end of the 2022/23 season but Chelsea acted quickly and handed Runham his first professional contract.

It is still a long and unknown road to the Chelsea first-team for Frankie, but he has shown he has the character to tackle every obstacle in his way. A combination of character and ability to come out of the Cobham Academy hasn’t been since the debuts of John Terry and Reece James.

Runham will get his chance very soon, and considering he is just 16, time is surely on his side. This attacking midfielder is surely one to keep an eye on!

 

Arnold Lewis
A hardcore Chelsea fan, who is often found playing football on the weekends. He has an exceptional voice and his rendition of old Hindi classic songs will make your heart melt. He is the man with the funky hair.

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