Roman Abramovich Orders Andre Villas-Boas To Field Chelsea Youngsters In League Cup 'To Promote Talent'

The Russian billionaire has taken matters into his own hands by asking the new manager to use the cup competition like Arsenal do in order to nurture the club's promising stars

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has ordered Andre Villas-Boas to field a side of youngsters for their League Cup tie with Fulham.

Much has been made of the Russian billionaire’s ongoing quest for Champions League glory, yet Villas-Boas claims the change in approach is not to aid the club’s chances in other competitions but simply to develop their best young players.

“It’s a club philosophy, a decision the owner wants, to promote talent,” Villas-Boas told reporters.

"But there is a responsibility to try and win trophy as well. I think there is prestige in the competition.”

The Portuguese manager pointed to their great London rivals Arsenal as a prime example of how the League Cup can be used to nurture exciting young talents.

“Arsenal have been doing it for years. We can discuss if it has been useful or not for the talent. But I think it has been, they reached the final last year and a couple of semis. [It is] important to get a feeling of competition for them," he said.

“The Carling Cup is an opportunity for us to put our best young talents across and give them experience for us. It’s not a completely new approach as we did it last year.

“We want them to have these opportunities. It’s a good challenge as Fulham are a Premier League team, and it gives us an idea of where we stand.”

The new philosophy will give exciting talents such as Josh McEachran the perfect platform to stake a claim for their inclusion in first team.

Villas-Boas, however, was quick to reassure senior members of his squad, in particular Frank Lampard, that this does not spell the end of their Chelsea careers.

He continued: “He is a fantastic player, he will be a key player for the rest of the season. I think he can adapt his game. [You] see that different kind of versatility in other players, but it’s not an age or slowing problem.

“Frank has played 90 minutes in all games before with maximum intensity with extremely good physical stats as always in his career.”

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