Chelsea: What happened to the three youngsters that Jose Mourinho tipped for greatness?


Love him or loathe him, Jose Mourinho is one of the greatest managers of his generation.



The Portuguese has managed Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan, Real Madrid, Chelsea (again), Manchester United, Tottenham and now Roma. He’s tasted success almost everywhere he’s gone.

Of course, the recent spell at Tottenham didn’t exactly go to plan but we can’t forget his previous successes.

He became a hero at Chelsea for winning consecutive league titles before returning to win the 2014/15 title.

However, despite claiming 25 trophies during his incredible managerial career, we know that he doesn’t always get it right.

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One example of that was at the start of the victorious 2014/15 season where he made a rather big prediction about three young Chelsea players.

On the pre-season tour, he said: “My conscience tells me that if, for example, Baker, Brown, and Solanke are not national team players in a few years, I should blame myself,.

“They are part of a process the club started without me. At this moment, we have players who will be Chelsea players. And when they become Chelsea players, they will become England players, almost for sure.”

You probably don’t need telling but Mourinho’s prediction didn’t exactly go to plan.

But what has happened to the three mentioned players?

Well, let’s take a look:

Lewis Baker

Baker is still actually contracted to Chelsea but has spent virtually his entire career out on loan. He’s temporary played for Sheffield Wednesday, Milton Keynes Dons, Vitesse, Middlesbrough, Leeds United, Reading, Fortuna Düsseldorf and Trabzonspor.

Baker is now 26 and has played just once for Chelsea - a three-minute substitute appearance in the FA Cup against Derby in January 2014.

He did earn 17 caps for England U21s, scoring eight goals, but is yet to play for the senior side.

He did actually play for Thomas Tuchel's side in their recent friendly against Bournemouth but it seems unlikely he'll break into the first-team.

Lewis Baker for Chelsea vs Bournemouth

Izzy Brown

Brown also spent much of his Chelsea career out on loan at Vitesse, Rotherham, Huddersfield, Brighton, Leeds, Luton and Sheffield Wednesday.

Brown actually played in the Premier League as he came off the bench for 11 minutes on the final day of the title-winning 2014/15 season.

This summer, Brown signed for Preston on a free transfer.

Former Chelsea youngster Izzy Brown is now at Preston

Dominic Solanke

Solanke left Chelsea in 2017 with one appearance to his name - a 17-minute Champions League cameo during a 6-0 victory over Maribor in 2014.

After a loan at…you guessed it…Vitesse, he left Chelsea in 2017 for Liverpool where he went on an infamous goal drought of 26 matches before scoring in his 27th - on the final day of the Premier League season.

He moved to Bournemouth for around £19 million in January 2019 and has since scored 19 goals in 91 appearances for the Cherries.

But Mourinho did get it right when he said Solanke would play for England. Because in November 2017, he played 15 minutes in a friendly against Brazil at Wembley.

Mourinho will no doubt take the credit for that one...

Dominic Solanke for Bournemouth vs Chelsea

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