When Charly Musonda scored on his full debut at Chelsea last month he was surely thinking his big break had arrived, but like many academy players before him he is growing frustrated with the lack of first-team opportunities.
Earlier this week he told his 150,000 social media followers: "You sacrifice, you work hard, harder, you give more than what's expected, and often more than you can. And what do you get back? Literally nothing... done"
The Roman Abramovich era has undoubtedly brought huge success; five Premier League titles and glory for the first time in the Champions League.
That has been matched at academy level with Chelsea winning the FA Youth Cup six times in eight seasons, but the young players are struggling to break into the first team. John Terry is the most recent regular first team player who started at the club.
In fact, just 2% of league playing time in Chelsea’s first-team last season was by homegrown players. At Arsenal, by comparison, it was 15%.
Since the start of 2014-15, Chelsea have completed 160 loan deals for 69 different players. Of these loanees that have since been sold (excluding older players) they have delivered a return on investment in transfer fees of around £60m.
21st Club are an analytics company who advise 12 Premier League clubs. Omar Chaudhuri, their head of football intelligence, says Chelsea’s model works for them.
Antonio Conte, Chelsea’s manager, insists there is a pathway for players to get into his first-team.