Is Nevin right to say that Ampadu can have the same impact as a big signing?

Maurizio Sarri’s delayed appointment as Chelsea manager means it’s unlikely that he secured all his top targets before the window closed.

The Daily Mail reported that the former Napoli boss was keen to bring a new centre-back to the Bridge; Daniele Rugani from Juventus.

Former Chelsea man Pat Nevin has named one current defender who can make Sarri forget about multi-million pound targets; Ethan Ampadu.

LONDON, ENGLAND – MAY 19: Pat Nevin works for Chelsea TV prior to the Emirates FA Cup Final between Chelsea and Manchester United at Wembley Stadium on May 19, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

High praise

He wrote for the club’s official website: “Anyone who watched our game against Lyon will be aware that Ethan Ampadu is very likely to push David Luiz, Toni Rudiger, Andreas Christensen and Gary Cahill as much as just about any other centre-back we could have thrown £50million or £60million at.”

He didn’t mention Rugani or any other target by name, but Nevin’s message is clear. Ampadu is such a talent that he doesn’t want another big-money recruit further block his path to the first team.

LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 07: Ethan Ampadu of Chelsea lines up before the pre-season friendly match between Chelsea and Olympique Lyonnais at Stamford Bridge on August 7, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images)

That problem that impacts Chelsea’s youngsters probably more than at any other club in the Premier League.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek enjoyed an impressive World Cup but has returned to Chelsea to see two new roadblocks; Mateo Kovacic and Jorginho, between him and a regular first-team berth.

Cahill’s advancing years means that Ampadu, as well as Christensen, should now be given games. Deputies to Luiz and Rudiger – who look set to be first choice under Sarri – are needed

The Italian likes being adventurous with his playing style; it would go a long way with the fans if he had similar guts when selecting young players.

With Ampadu specifically, the main worry at centre-half is his physical stature; but only gametime will show up whether that’s a major issue or not.

Sam Preston a senior football writer for the Boot Room and United in Focus. He is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist with five years of professional experience writing digital content. He studied with the Press Association and also has a 2:1 Law with French Law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Burnley, Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.