‘I still wanted to be at Chelsea’ – Billy Gilmour has his say on why he had to move on

He could’ve become a mainstay in the Chelsea midfield for years to come and it’s clear that Billy Gilmour wanted to be just that.

The now 21-year-old has had his say on his move away from Stamford Bridge, and his words will likely disappoint many Blues fans.

Not to mention that he’s finally gaining a foothold in the Brighton first-team. With Alexis Mac Allister and Moises Caicedo set to move on this summer, Gilmour can make the central midfield his own.

“After my [Norwich] loan, I still wanted to be at Chelsea, to be a part of their first-team plans but quite quickly in pre-season I knew that wasn’t going to be the case,” he said in the programme notes for Brighton’s recent match against Southampton, cited by Sussex Live.

“But I didn’t want to go out on loan again, I wanted to find a home, to play for a team and be settled.

“I had other clubs interested but once I knew of Brighton’s interest, it was a pretty straightforward decision for me to make. I haven’t looked back since. Now I just want to play more games and keep progressing.”

Given the standard of recent performances, it does make you wonder ‘what might’ve been’ as far as Gilmour is concerned.

Loved on the terraces for his grit and determination, Steve Clark was never in any doubt that the youngster would become a player.

“He’s done well Billy. I think it was obviously a tough situation for him when he got there. He was competing against two world-class players in (Moises) Caicedo and (Alexis) Mac Allister, and it took him a long time to work his way into the team,” he was quoted as saying by The Herald.

“But since he has come into the team his performances have been good, which is a positive for Billy and probably a positive for Brighton moving into next season, and certainly a positive for the national team.

“I think his performances made a lot of people very excited about what he could bring us.

“I’ve always spoken about Billy as one for now, but definitely one for the future.”

After a real season of upheaval at the Bridge, Gilmour’s emergence is another gut punch that the Blues don’t need.

There’s no use dwelling on the past, however, even if he’s just the type of player that would fit right into Pochettino’s plans.

Now it’s time to get behind the manager and his backroom staff as they attempt to turn the squad into one that’s capable of winning trophies.

1 Comment

  1. I think we can credit Gilmour as a reasonably talented player, wish him well, and still recognize that he’s unlikely to ever reach the world-class (“galactico”) level (a la Kante) that we aspire to have feature in our first team midfield. Maybe Gilmour reaches this level and we regret the transfer, but a long-term starter at the likes of Brighton (should Gilmour be industrious even to become one) is, on average, rarely more than a squad player at Chelsea and, like most of our youth players of the past, he was always going to need to leave in order to get the playing time he needed to reach his potential. Thus, I think Billy Gilmour is most likely not a tale of “what might have been,” but, rather, the predictable product of a quality youth system that reliably produces solid pros but which, even under the best of circumstances, is only going to produce a clear gem (like Reece James appears he’s becoming) once every four or five years (if we’re lucky).

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