Ian Wright says 21-year-old was the best player on the pitch when he made his Chelsea debut, but they sold him anyway

Ian Wright has said Brighton’s Tariq Lamptey was the best player on the pitch during his Chelsea debut before they sold him.

Lamptey, 21, is a quality full-back who’s a key figure in the Brighton XI.

He’s yet another supreme talent to come out of Chelsea’s academy at Cobham, but the Blues decided to sell him to Brighton in January 2020.

The English right-back played three first-team games for Chelsea, including a memorable debut in a 2-1 Premier League victory against Arsenal.

First of all, Wright is blown away by the youngster’s talent and says Reece James is the only reason he doesn’t still play at Stamford Bridge. Also, he claims Lamptey was the best on the pitch when he made his senior debut with a scintillating 30-minute cameo against Arsenal.

Grading Every Club's January Transfer Window

He received huge praise from some Chelsea fans for that second-half performance, but he’s now thriving at league rivals Brighton.

“I literally cannot believe no-one has tried to prise that man out of Brighton… I remember he made his debut [for Chelsea] he came off the bench against Arsenal and he was literally the best player on the pitch,” Wright said.

“You’ve got to understand the only reason this guy is not playing for Chelsea is because Reece James is there. Reece James is the person that stopped him.”

Photo by Robin Jones/Getty Images

Lamptey too good for Chelsea bench

Yes, it would be amazing to have James and Lamptey competing for the right wing-back spot in Thomas Tuchel’s squad.

In fairness, Lamptey wasn’t content with a squad role and he’s shown a lot of personality as a youngster to go become an important first teamer at a top-flight rival.

It was obvious from his first-team debut he was ready for the big time with his pace, stamina and passion.

Tuchel must still be happy he’s got 22-year-old James to rely on. The England international is one of the best full-backs around when he’s in form and it’s going to be a major lift when he returns from his injury.

Keep up to date with all the latest Chelsea news and opinion by following The Chelsea Chronicle’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.

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.