With Stamford Bridge hosting the second leg of FA Youth Cup final this evening (Monday), the official Chelsea website takes a look at the players who have been involved in the run to this stage of the competition.
Our Under 18s under the management of Adi Viveash take on Norwich City, trailing by a single goal after the match at Carrow Road.
Tickets for tonight’s game, which kicks-off at 7.45pm, can be purchased from the box office until 4pm. It is also live on Chelsea TV.
Mitchell Beeney – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 7
Beeney has stepped up as first-choice goalkeeper for this year’s Youth Cup campaign, replacing the now-ineligible Jamal Blackman after serving as his understudy throughout last year’s successful run. The Leeds-born shot-stopper has been an ever-present between the sticks as Chelsea have reached another final.
Ben Killip – Youth Cup 2013/13 appearances: 0
Yet to feature in this season’s campaign, Killip is back-up to Beeney as goalkeeper. Having joined Chelsea as an Under-9, Ben played his way up through every age group at the club and has made 12 Under-18 league appearances this term.
Fankaty Dabo – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 2 (2)
England Under-16 and Under-17 representative Dabo has featured on four occasions in this campaign’s road to the final, starting in the early rounds at Colchester and Charlton. Equally capable at right-back or further up the field out wide, Dabo, who has been at the club since Under-12 level, has provided Viveash with options.
Ola Aina – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 3
Aina came into the Youth Cup side for the first time at the semi-final stage and started both matches at right-back against Liverpool, as well as the first leg of the final at Carrow Road. Very quick and a good height, he has also played centre-back, left-back and in midfield while coming through the age groups at Chelsea, first joining as an Under-11. Ola is from Essex and is still a schoolboy but plays for England Under-17s having also represented England at Under-16s.
Alex Davey – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 7
Davey is one of just four players to have started every game in this season’s Youth Cup campaign. The centre-back has impressed with his excellent range of passing and tough tackling, however was unfortunate to be credited with an own goal in the quarter-final at Derby after a dangerous cross was deflected past Beeney. The 18-year-old has represented Scotland at Under-19 level.
Nathan Ake – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 6, goals: 1
Current Dutch Under-19 captain Ake has managed to juggle first-team involvement this season with regularly featuring throughout the Youth Cup run. His goal against Liverpool in the second leg of the semi-finals, a powering front-post header right before half-time to put the Blues 2-1 up on the night, was crucial. The 18-year-old can play at left-back and in midfield and has provided versatility for Viveash throughout this campaign, as he did last year when he missed just one game on the road to cup victory.
Andreas Christensen – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 4, goals: 1
One of the more recent additions to the Chelsea ranks, Christensen joined last year from Brondby and has progressed quickly to become a regular for Dermot Drummy’s Under-21s, as well as an important member of the Youth Cup side, scoring the crucial first goal in the comeback against Charlton in Round 4. However a knock in the semi-final first leg has kept him sidelined. He has featured for Denmark throughout Under-16, Under-17 and, most recently, Under-19 age groups.
Adam Nditi – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 4
An ever-present for Viveash in last year’s Youth Cup campaign, Nditi continued to prove a dependable option at left-back this term, starting in all four of the opening rounds before recent injury problems curtailed his involvement. Speedy and athletic, he has progressed through the Chelsea ranks steadily since joining the club in 2008.
Kevin Wright – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 3
With Chelsea since Under-10 level, Wright has established himself as a regular at left-back for the Under-18s this season and stepped into a Youth Cup starting spot in the absence of the injured Adam Nditi for both semi-final legs and the first-leg of the final. Originally from Waltham Forest, he has an impressive turn of pace and an eagerness to get forward in attacking forays down the wing whenever possible.
Jordan Houghton – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 1
Houghton is a versatile central option for Viveash, able to operate from defence or further up the pitch in midfield, and has been a regular in the youth league team since making his debut as an Under-15. His sole Youth Cup appearance this campaign came in the opening win at Colchester and injury has kept him sidelined since the turn of the year. An England Under-16 and Under-17 representative.
Dion Conroy – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 0 (4)
Conroy’s first season as a scholar has been impressive as he has made appearances for Dermot Drummy’s Under-19 NextGen side and the Under-21s, as well as establishing himself as a regular in the youth league team. The commanding centre-back has been at Chelsea since Under-13 level and featured from the bench on four occasions en route to this year’s final.
Lewis Baker – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 7, goals: 4
Baker has been an ever-present in this year’s run, as he was last season, bagging an impressive four goals along the way. The captain scored a brace in the opening game at Colchester as well as strikes in the fifth round and quarter-final, including two penalties. The 18-year-old midfielder has become a regular for the Under-21s, as well as earning call-ups for England Under-18s and Under-19s.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 7
The 17-year-old has been at Chelsea since Under-8 level and has enjoyed a fine campaign as he has split his time between Under-18 and Under-21 age groups. The midfield roamer can influence games both from deeper and more advanced roles and hasn’t missed a game throughout this year’s Youth Cup run. Loftus-Cheek has represented England at Under-16 and Under-17 level.
Jeremie Boga – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 6
An Under-16 who came to Chelsea as an Under-12, Jeremie is a technically accomplished attacking midfielder most frequently used in the ‘No.10’ role, but he has also played wider on the left in this Youth Cup run. His vision and ability to burst past his marker make him exciting to watch and he has played for France Under-17s. For Chelsea he has both started games and scored goals for our Under-21 and Under-19 NextGen sides this season.
John Swift – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 4 (2), goals: 1
A 17-year-old who signed professional terms last summer, Swift has featured in our Under-18, Under-19 and Under-21 sides this season. An excellent passer of the ball, he has played in all but one of the games on the road to the Youth Cup final this year, having started every game of last year’s run. The Portsmouth-born midfielder has represented England at Under-16, Under-17, Under-18 and Under-19 age groups.
Charlie Colkett – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 2 (3)
A creative, attacking central midfielder who made his debut for the youth team while an Under-15 last season. Still a schoolboy this campaign, Charlie started the FA Youth Cup semi-final first leg at Anfield and the first leg of the final at Carrow Road and has come on in three other games en route to the final. He has scored twice in 12 league appearances for the youth team this season and was frequently used as a sub in the NextGen Under-19 European tournament. From the east of London, Charlie has played for England at Under-16 and Under-17 level.
Connor Hunte – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 1 (3), goals: 1
Although still a schoolboy, Connor has a long history in the Chelsea Academy, having first played for the Under-9s. Fast, direct and capable of going past opponents with the ball, he primarily operates from the left wing and has scored goals for the Chelsea Under-21 team late in the season. Connor has four appearances including one start in this season’s Youth Cup campaign and has found the net once, the excellent extra-time winner at the Valley against Charlton in Round 4. An England Under-17 international who previously played for his country at Under-16s, he is from the Croydon area.
Charly Musonda – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 0 (1)
With his registration to play completed, Musonda came into the Youth Cup squad for the first leg of the final and made his debut as a second-half substitute. A slightly built attacking player who can operate anywhere behind the striker, he has captained Belgium at Under-16 and Under-17 level. The younger brother of Chelsea Under-21 squad members Lamisha and Tika.
Jesse Starkey – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 0 (1)
First-year scholar Starkey has been a regular for Viveash’s Under-18 league side this season, earning himself a reputation as a free-kick specialist along the way. His Youth Cup involvement has been restricted to one substitute appearance in the 3-0 win against Barnsley in Round 5. The Brighton-born 17-year-old has also represented the Under-19s and Under-21s in this 2012/13 campaign.
Alex Kiwomya – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 5 (1), goals: 6
Nephew of former Arsenal and QPR striker Chris, Alex has enjoyed something of a starring role in the Youth Cup holders’ progress to another final this season, with six goals in as many appearances. Still only 16, Kiwomya’s pace and directness have caused defenders problems, most notably as he notched crucial goals late on at Anfield in the semi-final first leg against Liverpool, the winner at Pride Park against Derby in the quarter-finals and a brace against Barnsley in Round 5. The forward has represented England at Under-16 and Under-17 levels.
Islam Feruz: Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 5, goals: 1
An electric-paced centre-forward, Somalia-born Feruz’s goalscoring record this season includes six goals in seven appearances in the NextGen Under-19 European competition and the opening goal of this year’s Youth Cup campaign at Colchester back in early December. This season has also seen the 17-year-old make his Scotland Under-21 debut.
Reece Mitchell – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 3
England Under-16 representative Mitchell won an early penalty at Derby in the quarter-finals, though the leg injury he sustained in the process has sidelined the striker for the remainder of the campaign.
Chike Kandi – Youth Cup 2012/13 appearances: 0 (1)
A more recent addition to the Chelsea Academy, having signed in the summer of 2011 from Birmingham City, Kandi has worked his way into Viveash’s youth league team this season, though he has featured just the once from the bench in the Youth Cup, in the fifth round against Barnsley. The striker has represented Wales at Under-16 and Under-17 levels.
– Live text commentary of the game will be available via this link (NB this is a different page from the one used for first team matches).