Alfie Gilchrist has been given minutes by Mauricio Pochettino this season.

6 Chelsea youngsters Mauricio Pochettino has handed debuts in 2023-24

Despite making a slow start at Chelsea, Mauricio Pochettino has offered a number of youngsters first-team opportunities during his reign at Stamford Bridge.

Needing to fill the gaps of an unbalanced squad, Pochettino has turned to a number of youngsters – especially in the domestic cup competitions.

We’ve taken a look at the six youngsters given their debut by Pochettino and how they’ve fared this season.

Mason Burstow 

Burstow was given his Premier League bow as a substitute during the defeat at West Ham last August as Chelsea chased in vain for an equaliser.

The young striker was loaned to Sunderland after two further appearances, but has failed to score in his 12 matches for the Black Cats, assisting just once in the Championship.

Sunderland boss Michael Beale has said himself that no decision has been made to send the forward back to Chelsea, indicating that he could remain at the Stadium of Light for the rest of the season.

“I gave Mason a go (off the bench at Rotherham), I gave young Eliezer a go off the bench against Coventry City last week,” Beale told the Northern Echo.

“I’m looking at the boys in the training, it’s my first time working with them and it’s been spoken about enough that the strikers we brought in haven’t scored yet.”

Diego Moreira

After his contract with Benfica expired, Moreira was snapped up by Chelsea last summer and made his debut in the League Cup victory over Wimbledon last August.

But the winger was shuffled off to Lyon on summer deadline day, joining the Ligue 1 club on a season-long loan.

He’s played six games without scoring in a struggling team – Lyon are currently 14th in the table and show little sign of escaping their extended funk.



Alfie Gilchrist 

Gilchrist joined Chelsea’s academy in 2014 and has frequently captained the Blues’ various youth teams, earning comparisons to club legend John Terry through his whole-hearted approach to the game.

His debut came as Chelsea ran the clock down against Crystal Palace in December, with the 20-year-old putting in some biting tackles to help the Blues over the line.

After a similar role against Luton, the 20-year-old academy defender earned his first start against Preston and impressed with his calmness in possession. Expect him to get more opportunities this season.

Alfie Gilchrist of Chelsea U21

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Alex Matos

Matos moved from Norwich City to Chelsea over the summer and made his club bow as a substitute in the Premier League win over Fulham in October.

The 19-year-old midfielder made a further appearance in the League Cup before being sent on loan to Championship outfit Huddersfield Town in January.

“Alex has a fantastic pedigree, exciting career to date and huge hunger and desire to succeed right at the very highest level of the game – as his manager, it’s that mentality and application that I find most exciting about him,” Terriers boss Darren Moore said.

“A little bit different to all of our current options, I’m keen to get working with him straight away to see how his game can compliment and enhance not only his team-mates in midfield, but the side as a whole.”

Michael Golding

Golding made his Chelsea bow as a late substitute during their FA Cup Third Round victory over Preston at Stamford Bridge.

The versatile midfielder, who was regular for the Under-18s last year before breaking into the under-23s earlier this season, was a poor touch away from scoring on his debut after latching on to Noni Madueke’s saved shot.

And he also gave us this sweet moment. Cute.

Deivid Washington 

After catching the eye at Santos, Chelsea bought Deivid over to the Premier League and gave the 18-year-old his bow during the Premier League loss to Brentford in October.

Having signed a seven-year contract at Stamford Bridge, Deivid is in it for the long haul and made his second appearance during the FA Cup paddling of Preston, nearly scoring a glanced header.

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