Gilmour made his senior debut for Chelsea in August and has played five times for the first-team this season, most recently as a starter in the FA Cup fourth round last month. But the 18-year-old had still spent the majority of the season in the Under-23 squad.
Now, however, Chelsea’s number 47 will be a permanent part of the senior setup moving forward.
“I went with the squad to Leicester [on 1 February] and even though I wasn’t involved, the gaffer pulled me afterwards to tell me that after the winter break I’d be with the first-team permanently,” an excited Gilmour told the club’s official website.
“It’s a dream come true for me. It’s the first big step I think, moving into the first team dressing room at a club like Chelsea. It’s massive for me.”
Born in Glasgow and a Chelsea player since the age of 16 when he joined from Rangers, Gilmour has explained that such a display of faith from Lampard is a huge confidence boost.
“Age isn’t really an issue here. The gaffer has shown that if you work hard and perform well, then you will get opportunities,” he said.
Lampard has been noted for his willingness to give home-grown players a chance this season, with Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori all regularly starting games. Callum Hudson-Odoi and Reece James have also had opportunities since recovering from injury.
Owing to a transfer ban, Chelsea were only able to bring add Christian Pulisic and Mateo Kovacic to their squad last summer, while the club failed to strengthen in January, despite the ban being lifted.
With Chelsea still competing on three fronts, it puts a strain on the existing squad and the growing involvement of Gilmour is a key move to increase depth and rotation options.
Source : 90min