Chelsea: How bright is the future of young Billy Gilmour?

Billy Gilmour burst onto the scene for Chelsea against Liverpool in the FA Cup. His performance begged the question, just how good can the Scot be?

Let’s start with a kid so young, he can’t even rent a car. Billy Gilmour got a surprise start in the FA Cup against Liverpool and sprung to life in the Chelsea midfield. After a flashy start, can he hold down that midfield role in the near future once he recovers from his injury? There’s a lot to unpack in the way Gilmour plays the game because there’s a lot of unique aspects to his game.

Questions have begun to circle about what his best position is: we’ve seen him feature in a central midfield role, although the style of break-up football he plays suggests he’d be better as a defensive midfielder. Alternatively, his height suggests making him a lone defensive midfielder would have more risks than benefits.

I personally believe his best position to be as a central midfielder, someone who runs around a lot and breaks up plays, but isn’t dominant in the air. At just 5-foot-7, you wouldn’t be expecting him to dominate in the air, so maybe putting a big midfielder alongside him could help. In other words, a position like N’Golo Kante has played for Chelsea in the past would be ideal.

There’s a lot of pressure put on someone like Gilmour to perform at the Premier League level after turning the needle around completely from academy development to first-team player. Having the kind of performance he did what feels like a year ago now against Liverpool, for a club as big as Chelsea, will throw him into the spotlight. It’s going to put major expectations on the 19-year-old, and there’s no reason he can’t reach those goals and even surpass them.

Now, I can hear you yelling through your screens “why?”. If that’s not what you said, and there were some more expletives in your thinking, I don’t blame you but this family-friendly site, so watch your language. However, it’s a good question. Why can Gilmour can reach those heights? I have no more access to the club than any fan does, I’m just a sad blogger who’s sat behind a computer screen.

Gilmour grew up a Chelsea fan in Scotland; he’s playing for his boyhood club. He’s being managed by the best midfielder the Premier League has ever seen, who is also Chelsea’s all-time top scorer. He’s playing in the role of Lampard while being managed by Lampard. It’s no secret he will have desires to reach that top level and play the same kind of role that made his manager so famous. Gilmour will obviously want to win trophies, there’s no better midfielder to teach the young lad about winning trophies than Lampard.

“So, if he can reach the heights and fulfill expectations? How good can he be? It’s the title of the article, so you need to tell me” I can hear in an echo chamber. Gilmour is unique. I cannot think of a midfielder who can drive play like Mateo Kovacic, spray passes like Cesc Fabregas and cover every blade of grass like Kante. I can objectively say that I believe Billy Gilmour has all the right pieces to be one of the best midfielders in the world.

This obviously depends on how well he returns from his knee surgery. As I’m certain you’re aware, a bag leg injury can change someone’s career completely. They can turn a superstar into a lower league player, they can end careers. However, if Gilmour can overcome this and get back to the level he was at prior to the injury, I don’t believe there’s a limit for how good he can be.

What do you think Gilmour’s potential is? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter!