Chelsea have been accused of neglecting their youth players by exploiting the loan market. The Blues had an incredible 38 players on loan at other clubs across Europe and before this season, it looked like the club were stockpiling talent in order to make a profit. They have done it with a number of players in the past and it was an effective method to help bypass the financial fairplay rules. However, Antonio Conte is keen to show the players out on loan that there is a route to the Chelsea first team with both Victor Moses and Nathaniel Chalobah beginning to establish themselves at Stamford Bridge.
The former has started in the last three Premier League matches and has impressed in the 3-4-3 formation that is being used by Conte. His start against Hull was his first for Chelsea in the league since joining the club in 2012. The Nigerian international has been on loan spells to Liverpool, Stoke City and West Ham. Over that time, he impressed without ever looking like a top four quality player. It never looked likely that he would be able to establish himself at Chelsea and a permanent move to a bottom half Premier League side was the most likely solution for him, but Conte had other ideas.
Since taking over at Chelsea, the Italian has been keen to give every player in the squad a chance to prove themselves, regardless of their achievements in the game to date. There have been a few players that have been able to move into a more senior role under the former Italy manager, but the case of Moses highlights the new policy at the club best. He is on the verge of becoming a regular starter in the first team and currently keeping Cesar Azpilicueta out of the team. The 25-year-old is playing as a right wing-back, but he could also be used in a more advanced position.
His performances during this three-match-run in the first team have been impressive, with the Nigerian international managing to score against Leicester City in the process. He has the energy, pace and work rate to succeed as a wing-back. His one major fault is that his end product can be inconsistent, but he doesn’t have to be one of the main threats in the Chelsea side. His work rate shines through in the role he is currently being used in and his defensive contribution has improved under the guidance of Antonio Conte.
Against Manchester United, the winger gave a complete performance and contributed in both halves of the pitch. He completed two tackles and six interceptions, showing how he can dig in and win the ball back for his side. Despite playing in a side with bigger expectations, Moses isn’t afraid to run with the ball and often picks the correct moment to surge forward. He completed both of his attempted dribbles as he displayed the attacking flair that he does possess. The 25-year-old has also become a regular set piece taker for the side and put in a couple of good deliveries on Sunday.
The resurgence of Victor Moses should serve as motivation to those 38 Chelsea players that are currently out on loan. Antonio Conte is prepared to give them a chance in the first team if they apply themselves like Moses did over pre-season. This is especially the case for home-grown players as Chelsea need to increase the number in their first team squad. Although it is still early in the season, it looks like Moses will play a significant role for Chelsea this season and it is a much deserved reward for a player that has never given up hope of making it at Stamford Bridge.