Mason Mount has opened up on the ‘mentality’ needed to make it at Chelsea, following the success of several of the club’s academy graduates under Frank Lampard this season.
Mount is amongst a host of young players currently thriving in the first-team at Stamford Bridge, the midfielder having been given his opportunity under Lampard this season alongside the likes of Tammy Abraham, Fikayo Tomori and Reece James.
The 20-year-old’s performances have seen him establish himself in the senior England squad, whilst Abraham and Tomori have also earned international recognition with James tipped to follow the trio in the near future.
The emergence of the quartet alongside Callum Hudson-Odoi has proven to be a huge positive for the club and their academy system, and Mount has opened up on the dedication and mentality needed to earn a first-team breakthrough at the west London side.
‘Coming through the academy and seeing so many brilliant footballers that I have played with since I was six being moved on and released and having to do something else with their lives was telling,’ Mount told the Daily Mail.
Five long-term extensions for five academy graduates in eight months at Chelsea:
🏴 Callum Hudson-Odoi to 2024
🏴 Ruben Loftus-Cheek to 2024
🏴 Mason Mount to 2024
🏴 Fikayo Tomori to 2024
🏴 Reece James to 2025
Toddlers, to teenagers, to first-teamers. pic.twitter.com/VbYlgXtc7p
— Scouted Football (@ScoutedFtbl) January 16, 2020
‘They were technically unbelievable but just didn’t have that mentality side. When you are close or good friends, it’s tough. But my dad always said: ‘That’s football and these things happen. You just have to make sure it’s not you.’
‘And he was right. You don’t want to be the boy leaving Chelsea, you want to train like every session is your last session because you know you always have to prove something to people.
‘My dad drilled that in to me at a young age that you don’t want to get released. You can’t let your foot off the pedal because if you do boys are coming in from overseas that are very talented and they will want to take your place.
‘Just because I am an academy boy and young, that doesn’t mean anything. But the mentality I have means I won’t be pushed over easily. I will fight for my position and keep working hard.
‘At a club as big as Chelsea you have to have that mentality. It always stuck with me. It’s why I am here in the first place.’