Fikayo Tomori made his debut for the Three Lions in the 4-0 win over Kosovo on Sunday, continuing an impressive run of Blues youth graduates to come into the team under Gareth Southgate.
Our young centre-back has immediately looked at home in the Premier League this term since Frank Lampard handed him his first prolonged spell in the Chelsea team, and his form led to him becoming the latest debutant for England in their final Euro 2020 qualification match.
With six minutes remaining in Sunday’s game in Kosovo, Tomori came on for Trent Alexander-Arnold, which made him the 1,246th player to represent the country at senior international level.
Of the past 21 additions to that list, no fewer than nine of them learned their trade at Chelsea’s Academy, having joined before the age of 10. Here is a little about each member of that group and what they have achieved in their career so far.
An Achilles injury ended Loftus-Cbeek’s breakthrough campaign at the club prematurely in May, but not before he’d played a big role in helping us to third place in the Premier League and into the final of the Europa League, scoring his first hat-trick for the club against BATE Borisov. He made his debut for England in November 2017 and went on to feature at the World Cup the following summer.
That same Germany fixture was also when Abraham make his international debut, while on loan at Swansea City. After impressing at Aston Villa last term, he returned to the Bridge this summer and has been Frank Lampard’s go-to selection at centre-forward, hitting double figures for Premier League goals already. He also opened his account at international level in the recent win over Montenegro.
Although he captained our youth and reserve sides, Cork never made a first team appearance for the Blues. However, the midfielder has since carved out a decent Premier League career for himself with Southampton, Swansea and Burnley. Like the two names before him on this list, he also made his England debut in the 0-0 draw with Germany in 2017, although he’s yet to add to his tally.
The striker’s solitary Blues appearance came as a 17-year-old in a Champions League win over Maribor in 2014. However, despite his impressive scoring exploits at youth level, he left us for Liverpool and now plays for Bournemouth. His one and only England cap came a few days after some of his peers listed above, in a 0-0 draw with Brazil.
Part of a select group of FA Youth Cup and Premier League-winning Blues, Chalobah appeared 10 times when we were crowned champions of England in 2017, five years after he had captained us to glory at youth level. He left for Watford soon after and a year later he came on in stoppage time in a Nations League win over Spain, which remains his solitary England cap.
The West Ham midfielder is good mates with Mason Mount from their time together in our Academy. Having been released at the age of 14, Rice moved across London to West Ham and has established himself in the Premier League and now with England, after switching from Ireland. He has appeared seven times since making his debut against the Czech Republic earlier this year.
The emergence of Hudson-Odoi last term delighted Blues fans who had seen him stand out at Under-18s level in FA Youth Cup-winning sides and he repaid Maurizio Sarri’s faith with five goals and some stand-out displays. He was swiftly called up by Southgate in March, becoming the youngest England player to debut in a competitive match, and he now has three caps to his name.
Another two-time FA Youth Cup winner, Mount enjoyed eye-catching loan spells with Vitesse and Derby County. He has since taken to Premier League football with four goals already this term and, having trained with England before the 2018 World Cup, he made his full international bow in September. He marked his sixth appearance against Kosovo with his maiden goal.
Like Mount, Tomori impressed with Derby County last term after starring for our Under-18s and he was voted the Rams’ Player of the Year. He announced himself to Blues fans with a stunning goal against Wolves in September and despite playing for Canada, the country of his birth, at Under-20s level, he has committed his international future to England and earned his first cap against Kosovo.