Abraham proves Chelsea's loan system is a good thing, says Powell

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Tammy Abraham
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The former Championship manager says that the Blues' development efforts should be lauded and that their loan policy does not damage the lower leagues

Chris Powell has coached several teams in the Championship and is excited to see players that have featured in the division looking set to start for Chelsea next season in the Premier League.

Chelsea had 42 players out on loan last season and their pathway for youngsters is increasingly being emulated at other clubs in England, with Manchester City operating a similar way.

However, the Blues' loan policy has also faced much criticism and that has come most notably from both FIFA and UEFA presidents Gianni Infantino and Aleksander Ceferin.

It is expected that a cap will be put on the amount of loanees clubs are allowed to send out, but Charlton Athletic legend Powell thinks that Chelsea are not damaging the English game and points to Abraham as an example of a player who seems ready to play at the top level next season.

"It's brilliant for individuals to be on loan," Powell told Goal at at the launch of EFL on Quest. "The loans that a player like Tammy Abraham has had have helped him develop. He has been to Bristol City and he played in the Premier League with Swansea City, then back to Aston Villa to score 20 goals.

"He's a player that now understands the rigours of playing week in, week out. Similar to [Mason] Mount who has gone back to Chelsea, similar with Harry Wilson at Liverpool - all of these players have had a good experience, what is not to like about that?

"You will see a lot of Championship players being loanees from the Premier League, clubs know that this is a good level of football. It is a very competitive environment. It develops you as a player and a person."

Chelsea look set to reduce the number of players on loan this summer by making sales and will get a further £58 million ($71m) next summer from selling Alvaro Morata to Atletico Madrid in a deal that has already been agreed.

Lewis Baker and Mario Pasalic, who are on loan at Fortuna Dusseldorf and Atalanta, respectively, could add a further £20m ($24m) with options to buy on their loan contracts.

Meanwhile, a host of youngsters will be fighting again to prove themselves in the Championship. Premier League clubs have increasingly been looking to the division below as transfers between clubs in the top-flight become so expensive.

And Powell picked out one of Frank Lampard's protégés from last season, Jayden Bogle, as one to watch this season. He says that the Derby defender is alongside Ryan Sessegnon and Tottenham's Jack Clarke, currently on loan at Leeds United, are the youngsters to keep an eye on.

"Players such as Bogle, the right-back at Derby who had such an exceptional first season, you hope that a player like him can carry on and kick on," Powell said. "I hope he shows everyone it wasn’t just for one season under Lampard’s tutelage.

"It is about creating a career for himself. There was talk about Premier League clubs moving for him, but he has stayed so far at Derby. I hope he can progress because you want them to have careers and play initially for their local side. He has been with them for a long time and hopefully they can move forward.

"Jack Clarke has gone back on loan to Leeds from signing for Spurs. Hopefully he can have a big say on how Leeds perform next year. There’s a couple of young players at West Brom who have played a few games. Let’s hope that carries on under Slaven Bilic.

"There’s no secret that Spurs have looked at Sessegnon, but you think it should have been done by now. There’s no stopping either team from making it happen. If it does happen, I can’t see why he doesn’t keep playing regular football.

"He made a big impression in the Championship and found it a bit tougher in the Premier League but that’s to be expected of a young player who never played at that level. If he does stay, I am sure he will show everyone what a good player he is again.

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"If it doesn’t happen with Fulham, if they don’t go up and get to where they need to go, then if he is still there then he will move on."

The first show of the 2019/20 season of EFL on Quest begins this Saturday 3rd August at 9pm. The only place to watch free-to-air highlights of the EFL is on Freeview channel 12, Freesat channel 167, Sky channel 144 and Virgin channel 217. Go to https://www.questod.co.uk/