N’Golo Kante has praised Chelsea teammate Billy Gilmour and described the young midfielder as someone who is “always ready to step up”.
Things looked promising for Gilmour following his recovery from a long-term knee injury earlier this season.
He went straight back into the first-team and in January, Lampard said the 19-year-old was “pushing” for a regular spot in his team.
But then the Lampard dismissal came following poor run of results.
Tuchel who has been appointed to succeed the Chelsea legend has made it clear that he sees a lot of qualities in Gilmour.
But the German seems to prefer more experienced midfielders, and Gilmour has fallen behind in the pecking order.
A couple of days ago, Gilmour made his first appearance for the development squad in months in a 1-1 draw against Leicester City U23s to get some minutes under his belt.
While Gilmour seems unlikely to be a first-team regular anytime soon, Kante insisted that the youngster has a future at Chelsea.
“We have trained together a long time now and we speak. I know what he [Gilmour] likes, he knows what I like,” Kante told Chelsea’s official website.
“I share sometimes my experience of what has happened in my national team or in previous teams.
“He is a good player with a good mentality. He is always ready to step up and do well, even when we call on him in training.
“He has good potential for now and the future, and I’m sure he will do well for Chelsea and in his career.”
It might have felt like a step backward for Gilmour’s career, but he is arguably in an ideal environment to grow as a player at Cobham.
All he has to do is to keep his head down and hopefully impress the manager on the training ground.
For now, his being “ready to step up and do well”, as Kante pointed out, is exactly what Tuchel needs from his fourth-choice midfielder.