Marcos Alonso has been in winning cup quarter-final teams before and after taking part in another when he played the whole of Chelsea’s 2-0 victory over Brentford last night, he paid tribute to those for whom it was a new experience.
Three teenage Academy products were handed their debuts from the start by Thomas Tuchel as he coped with a depleted squad. Harvey Vale and Jude Soonsup-Bell were part of the attack, and Xavier Simons on the right played as the opposite wing-back to Alonso.
‘Everyone, even at 17- or 18-years-old played a great game, it’s credit to everyone,’ declared the Spaniard.
‘I think they were on holidays two days ago. They came for a couple days of training and we saw the quality they have in this match. It is not easy to go here.
‘They have come to train with us sometimes. We see them and we follow them and I'm happy for them to make their debut. Hopefully they keep improving.
‘It was a very good game from everyone. It is difficult at this time, with so many games and with Covid and everything, but there was an amazing atmosphere from the away fans parked in the corner, we had a very good performance and a good win and off to the next round.’
That next round will be over two legs against Tottenham, a side Alonso has enjoyed success against in the past.
‘We are alive in every competition,’ he says, ‘and we go for it step by step one at a time. Let’s see.’