Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville highlights what Chelsea need to do next year

Jose Mourinho Chelsea

The former Manchester United man believes the next step is to blood the youngsters.

Sky Sports’ Gary Neville says Chelsea’s next step must be bringing through their current crop of exciting young stars into the first team.

The Blues were crowned Premier League champions on Sunday after beating Crystal Palace, courtesy of Eden Hazard’s solitary goal.

Their first-team squad is full of international stars but is painfully short of homegrown talent, despite the youth team having proved extremely successful over recent seasons.

Now, Neville says it is up to Mourinho to bring through the current crop of youngsters as the next step of the club’s development.

“He said earlier in the season ‘if I don’t start bringing through some of these boys then I’ve failed’, and I think we need to see that,” he said.

“I think that’s something that needs to be addressed. They’ve had such a fantastic record in youth competitions in the last five, six years. [Earlier in the campaign] there was an opportunity to play two or three younger lads, and he didn’t do that.”

The former Manchester United defender does however concede that the current crop of first team stars will become a formidable force in the years to come.

Star players Eden Hazard, Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas, Nemanja Matic and several others are all arguably in the prime of their careers and will be keen to add to their first title success.

And Neville believes that this Chelsea side are way ahead of their Premier League rivals at the moment and will be the team to catch in the next couple of seasons.

“They’re all at a pretty good age,” he added.

“They’re going to go again and again, and they’re the team to catch over this next couple of seasons. Now they’ve got the confidence after winning their first Premier League title, for a few of them. It becomes a lot easier after that first one.”

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