The Portuguese head coach said: “Against West Bromwich, especially because they’re safe and nobody is waiting for a result, I’ll play some of the kids: Nathan Ake, Izzy Brown who comes from West Bromwich so it’ll be special for the kid to play in that house... the boys deserve it, all of them.”
It will be the first time Brown returns to the Hawthorns, since leaving the club for Chelsea in 2013, for a compensation fee of around £1 million. Considered one of the brightest talents in English football, Brown became the second youngest ever Premier League player when he appeared for the Baggies in May 2013, and has since developed a reputation for himself at Stamford Bridge.
A winner of the FA Youth Cup and UEFA Youth League, Brown is also a English youth international, and captains the Blues Under-19 side. He is just 18, and alongside host of the Chelsea academy players, are seen as central to the club’s future fortunes.
If turning out against his former club, it will be Brown’s first ever senior appearance for Chelsea, following in the footsteps of Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Dom Solanke this term.
Next season will be an important one in Brown’s development, as he will need to be playing regularly if he is to have any chance of breaking into Chelsea’s senior squad.
A Premier League loan is most likely, and there are many clubs who will likely be willing to take him for the season on a temporary deal.