Reece James

Reece James, born on December 8, 1999, is a professional footballer who plays right back for Chelsea of the Premier League and the England national team. James entered the Chelsea youth program as a child and eventually went professional in 2017 after leading the under-18 team to an FA Youth Cup title as captain and being awarded the program’s Academy Player of the Year.

After a successful loan at Championship club Wigan Athletic in 2018, Chelsea promoted him to the first team in 2019, and he quickly established himself as a regular starter at right defender, leading to a contract extension in January 2020.

For tonight’s Premier League match against Southampton, Chelsea will be without Reece James. The England international did not make the trip.

James has started each of Chelsea’s first four Premier League games, in which he has helped the team out with two goals and an assist. But now he won’t be able to join the Blues on their road trip to face the Saints, where they’ll be trying to win their third game in a row.

It’s a shame for the 22-year-old Cobham grad, and unfortunate for Chelsea that they’ll have to play without one of their best offensive talents, but this is life.

This evening’s Premier League encounter between Chelsea and Southampton will be James’ first without him. There are reports that the England international did not make the trip.

Every one of Chelsea’s first four Premier League games has begun with James on the field, and he’s contributed both goals and assists in those contests. But now he won’t be able to join the Blues as they travel to take on the Saints and try to win their second game in a row.

The 22-year-old Cobham grad is dealt a blow, and Chelsea must do without one of their most promising offensive talents.

Afterward, Jody Morris, a former assistant manager at Chelsea, heaped admiration on James. Morris told the Stadium Astro network: “As a versatile player, he can fill in at right back, right wing back, right midfielder, or the right side of a back three.

“My old friend and I used to joke that he could play wherever in the lineup and yet give us nothing but high-quality results. That pretty about sums him up. In other words, he’s a natural football player.

“Even though our country produces many excellent right-backs, he was the first-most half’s impressive performer today. He made excellent use of his passing range.”

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Career

Reece James

James has played for England at the under-18, under-19, under-20, and under-21 levels. For the 2017 Toulon Tournament that took place in May, James was selected for the under-20 squad. He was a starter for England in the championship game against Ivory Coast, which they won to defend their title.

James was a member of the under-19 team that triumphed at the 2017 UEFA European Under-19 Championship in July. In the semi-final match against the Czech Republic, he started.

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On June 7, 2019, during the first half of the last group game against Chile, James, a member of the under-20 squad that traveled to the 2019 Toulon Tournament, was carried out on a stretcher with ankle ligament damage.

James made his debut with the U-21 team on October 4, 2019. On 15 November 2019, he made his U-21 debut in a 3-0 win against Albania in a qualifying match for the 2021 UEFA European Under-21 Championship.

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