The Mason Mount blueprint might be one to follow for most Championship clubs after the youngster enjoyed a stunning 2018/19 campaign at Derby County last season. In 44 appearances he scored 11 and assisted six as The Rams were defeated 2-1 in the playoff final to Aston Villa. Mount was instrumental in their season and I expect many other clubs to follow the similar route next season. Typically, some of Chelsea’s best prospects are shipped off to Holland – normally Vitesse Arnhem – to get some game time but that’s not really beneficial to anyone but the Dutch club. A player’s development is probably best suited to staying in England at club’s that can maximise their talent through the way they play. That’s why Frank Lampard had such a great spell when trusting the likes of Mount, Harry Wilson and Fikayo Tomori.
Mount has already impressed in two pre-season games under the Chelsea boss but so have many other youngsters, in particular Billy Gilmour – who some fans were comparing to Iniesta after his performance in their 1-1 draw with Bohemians. He’s only 18 yet has already commanded one transfer fee in his career after joining Stamford Bridge from Rangers in a £500k deal. The midfielder has been capped at every single level internationally and was often found playing well above his age group in Scotland – at the age of 16 he was training with the first team.
Gilmour is exactly the sort of player all the promotion-chasing sides in the Championship need to take them from contenders to winners. He’s certainly an ambitious young lad saying he wants to become “the best in the world.” Lampard too has heaped the praise on the youngster, questioning him to keep up this level of performance for the rest of the season – to me that seems like a plea to go out on loan, just like Mount, and show you’re up to it and then in a year’s time come and cement your spot during pre-season.
His performances in last summer’s Toulon Tournament should encourage clubs further in pursuing a loan deal after picking up the ‘Revelation of the Tournament‘ aged just 16 – he was also captain for a game at the tournament. If the youngster remains at Chelsea this summer then he will only continue to prosper, now under the guidance of one of the best midfielders of all-time and one that gives chances to those who earn it, unlike his predecessor, Maurizio Sarri, who fans were desperate to see utilise Callum Hudson-Odoi at times this season. I mean, maybe Lampard does Derby a favour – depending on who is appointed as manager – there’s a Mason Mount-sized hole left in their midfield, maybe Gilmour can fill that spot and replicate this past year.