Cesar Azpilicueta praises competition with Chelsea teammate Reece James

Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta has applauded the ability of his teammate Reece James, who is also his competitor for the right-back position at Stamford Bridge.

Azpilicueta, 31, is club captain after a phenomenal career with the Blues so far and he’s a real leader in the dressing room for Frank Lampard’s side.

The versatile Spaniard is mainly challenging for the right-back position in the XI, but academy graduate James is the player standing in his way.

Lampard has favoured 20-year-old James in three of the opening four Premier League games so far, but his experienced counterpart Azpilicueta was given the nod in the 4-0 win over Crystal Palace before the international break.

(Photo by Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images)

It’s certainly an area of the pitch where Chelsea are extremely strong and the duo are likely to fight it out throughout the course of the season, but fortunately there are plenty of European and domestic fixture to allow the manager the option to rotate.

“The competition with Reece is very strong. As I have said before, this is Chelsea and you have to fight for your place in the team along with many other good players. This has been the same since I arrived here in 2012,” Azpilicueta said, as quoted by the club’s official website.

“Reece is a fantastic boy, he’s a huge talent and he has lots of quality. I’m happy to try to help him and the team wherever I can.”

(Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

James, who has recently been called up to the senior England squad, will be hoping he’s given the chance to make his senior Three Lions debut during the international break.

The attack-minded full-back is someone that provides a goal threat when he pushes forward and has top-class delivery with his crosses into the box, something which is a dream for a centre-forward.

He’s viewed as the long-term answer to Chelsea right-back position, but it won’t be straightforward as long as Azpilicueta is in contention.

A sports journalist who graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016 and is a Chelsea supporter. Loves anything football or cricket related when it comes to England.