Billy Gilmour and Harvey Vale react after player Chelsea sold in the summer makes debut for new club

Billy Gilmour and Harvey Vale were two members of the Chelsea family who applauded Lewis Bate for making his Leeds United debut yesterday.

Bate donned the famous white jersey on Sunday in the FA Cup match against West Ham United for the first time since joining Marcelo Bielsa’s side in the summer.

Almost debut delight

He started the contest in central midfield alongside Robin Koch, with the Leeds boss rather short on senior players to field.

Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images

Unfortunately, the 19-year-old’s significant moment was drowned out by the final score line.

West Ham strolled into the next round with a 2-0 victory, leaving Leeds with just the Premier League to focus on this season.

However, they can take positives from getting Bate up to speed in the face of top-flight opposition, especially as the squad is already strained from injuries and covid absences.

For the teenager, no matter the result, it was an unforgettable afternoon.

Bate feels the love from the Blues

His period in the spotlight was cemented into the annals of history via an Instagram post.

In a response to his maiden appearance for Bielsa, plenty of Bate’s former Chelsea co-workers left a congratulatory message.

Gilmour, Vale and Xavier Mbuyamba replaced their kind words with some equally kind emojis.

Tino Livramento went for a short but simple reply, referencing the fact it took Bate nearly six months to play competitively for his new club.

Other reactions came from loaned-out players such as Levi Colwill and Thierno Ballo, alongside Dynel Simeu and Myles Peart-Harris who, like their ex-teammate, departed Cobham last year.

Leeds face West Ham again in the league this weekend, with Bate now in contention to be selected for the big time.

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.