Michael Emenalo claims he saved Chelsea academy from being shut down by Abramovich

Michael Emenalo claims he saved Chelsea academy from being shut down by Abramovich

- Michael Emenalo has revealed he saved the Chelsea youth academy from being closed down

- The former sporting director at Stamford Bridge claimed he convinced Abramovich to keep the project

- Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori who are all Chelsea's academy graduates were recently called up to play for England

Michael Emenalo has opened up on how he saved Chelsea's academy from being shut down when he was the club's sporting director.

The former Nigerian international claimed one manager proposed to Roman Abramovich to scrap the youth system because it is too expensive to run.

But the Russian billionaire supported Emenalo's idea of breeding new talents for the future of the west London club.

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And now, three of the academy graduates including Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori have been called up by Gareth Southgate to play for England.

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Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ruben Loftus-Cheek also have the potentials playing for the Three Lions if they recover into full fitness.

"'I defended the academy when there was pressure and doubt and pessimism.

"There was a time when there was a clamour to do more and a manager came in to make a presentation to say the academy was not necessary. The argument was it takes too long, we don't have time, we should use it to make some money here and there, and that the owner should stop pumping money into it because it seemed like a waste.

"But that wasn't my idea and I had to fight against it. This is where I am very, very proud of the owner Roman Abramovich because of the trust he had in me and the willingness to listen to me and give the academy time. He would not abandon it. He believed in it and in me, and I can't thank him enough for that."

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Meanwhile, Legit.ng had earlier reported that Dennis Bonaventure has spoken out about his backlash from fans during Club Brugge's first Champions League game against Galatasary.

The Belgian side played a 0-0 draw with the Turkish champions and the Super Eagles was held responsible for missing big chances in the game.

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Source: Legit Nigeria

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