Richard Olise, once touted as 'Reece James heir', returns to action for Chelsea after more than 21 months out 

Published: November 29, 2023
Richard Olise, once touted as 'Reece James heir', returns to action for Chelsea after more than 21 months out 

The highlight of Chelsea development squad's 4-1 loss to Strasbourg in a friendly at Cobham on Tuesday evening was the return to action of talented Nigerian defender Richard Olise, who is the younger brother of 2021 Super Eagles invitee and Crystal Palace winger Michael Olise. 


You could be forgiven if you thought Richard Olise was no longer a player of Chelsea, given that he had not played competitively for Chelsea's youth teams since January 25, 2022 when he featured off the bench against Aston Villa in the U18 Premier League. 


The friendly against Strasbourg was arranged in order for the players to get back to speed before their busy schedule in December. 


Olise joined Chelsea at U9 level, rising through the ranks before signing his first professional contract in September 2021.

The London-born player, in his own words, is a right-back who likes defending and getting forward as well, and making runs in behind, while he has been described by Chelsea's official website as a very calm and composed right-sided defender who has the ability to both defend and attack, and has all the attributes of a modern-day full-back.


Olise was touted to be the heir to Chelsea academy product Reece James but his progress has been hampered over the last twenty one months. 


Chelsea will have to make a decision on the future of Olise in the coming months, whether to offer him a new deal or allow him leave upon expiration of his contract on June 30, 2024.


The 19-year-old has played competitive matches for Chelsea in the U18 Premier League, U18 Premier League Cup, FA Youth Cup and UEFA Youth League. 




Ifeanyi Emmanuel 



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