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Chelsea keep close tabs on Barcelona under-19 starlet – A smart investment by Lampard?

Dutch defender Xavier Mbuyamba (centre) in action for Barcelona under-19 side.
Dutch defender Xavier Mbuyamba (centre) in action for Barcelona under-19 side. (Image Credits: Trendsmap.com)

Why Chelsea should make a move for Xavier Mbuyamba

According to Voetbal Internationa (h/t Daily Mail), Barcelona teenager Xavier Mbuyamba is on the radar of Chelsea, his agent has stated.

Dutch defender Xavier Mbuyamba (centre) in action for Barcelona under-19 side.
Dutch defender Xavier Mbuyamba (centre) in action for Barcelona under-19 side. (Image Credits: Trendsmap.com)

The highly-rated 18-year-old Dutch centre-back currently plays for the Catalan’s under-19 side and has earned rave reviews. However, he is yet to feature for the senior side, who have world-class defenders in Gerrard Pique, Clement Lenglet, and Samuel Umtiti.

Teenage sensation Mbuyamba joined Barcelona just last summer from MVV Maastricht, for whom he featured 11 times in the Dutch second division. Since arriving at Camp Nou, Mbuyamba has made three appearances for the Barcelona under-19 side in the UEFA Youth League.

He played in three of their four group matches in the Youth League, showcasing his potential as a rising talent.

With world-class defenders such as Clement Lenglet already within the Barcelona side, Mbuyamba's chances of making a senior team break seems increasingly limited.
With world-class defenders such as Clement Lenglet (left) already within the Barcelona side, Mbuyamba’s chances of making a senior team break seem increasingly limited. (Getty Images)

Mbuyamba could be a good future investment for Chelsea

Chelsea have enjoyed a successful spell in the league so far, with the side currently lying fourth in the table. A transfer ban last summer had restricted Lampard from bringing new players into the side, forcing him to rely on his side’s youngsters.

The side’s youngsters, on the other hand, have repaid their manager’s faith in them. Lampard owes it all to his side’s academy graduates such as Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount, Reece James, and Fikayo Tomori among others.

All these youngsters have made a breakthrough into the first-team line-up this season under Lampard and have delivered the goods when given an opportunity. With Lampard’s talented youngsters in the side already proving him that they are up for the task, it’s not a big surprise that the Blues are interested in young Mbuyamba.

Manager Frank Lampard has done a stellar job with Chelsea this season.
Manager Frank Lampard has done a stellar job with Chelsea this season. (Getty Images)

Chelsea currently have four centre-backs in Antonio Rudiger, Kurt Zouma, Andreas Christensen, and Fikayo Tomori in the side. Apart from Rudiger, the rest of the three are not regulars, meaning Lampard could do with an established centre-back in the coming days.

Tomori has impressed Lampard and is growing in stature but Zouma and Christensen have been inconsistent and are yet to impress him. That said, Chaaelsea could really do with young talent such as Mbuyamba.

He could prove to be an excellent future investment by the club given the fact that Lampard is not scared to give first-team opportunities to his side’s youngsters. Thus, they should quickly make a move for him and land him.

Centre-back Antonio Rudiger of Chelsea celebrates with Tammy Abraham after scoring his team’s second goal during the Premier League match against Leicester City last February. (Getty Images)

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Verdict

Despite Chelsea’s good display in the league, they haven’t found a consistent centre-back to partner Rudiger. So, a move for young Mbuyamba will only make them stronger and offer boss Lampard more choices at the back. Moreover, he is still in his teens and can improve even further under the guidance of Lampard.

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