Neil BathHead of Youth Development
Neil Bath joined the Chelsea schoolboys coaching staff part-time in 1993 and has worked his way up to the top of the Academy structure.
In 2002 he was appointed assistant Academy director with a responsibility for the Under 8-16 age groups and in the summer of 2004, he became Academy manager. In 2011 his role was further extended to oversee the Reserves/Under-21 set-up as head of youth development.
A Chelsea supporter, he helped to restructure our youth development programme in 2004 as a greater emphasis was placed on the recruitment and development of local youngsters in London and the south-east. Over a decade later, the rewards can be seen in the fact that the majority of our new scholars each year have been at the club since the Under-9 age group.
Bath has also overseen the most successful period for the Academy in terms of tournament achievements. Following the FA Youth Cup triumph in 2010, our first success in the tournament since 1961, we have lifted the trophy in 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. The feat of winning five years in a row has only ever been accomplished once before in the history of the competition, by the Manchester United Busby Babes side of the 1950s.
Our youngsters were also crowned Under-21 Premier League champions in 2013/14 and secured back-to-back triumphs in the UEFA Youth League, the Under-19 Champions League equivalent, in 2014/15 and 2015/16.
In July 2020 he was the recipient of the Eamonn Dolan award in recognition for excellent work in youth development at Chelsea FC.