Aldershot Town play their first official home match under Barry Smith this Wednesday – and their first at the renamed EBB Stadium – to face a Chelsea Under 21 side featuring several first-team squad members.
Dominic Solanke, Jake Clarke-Salter and Ola Aina are all included in Adi Viveash’s squad hours after returning from The Blues’ pre-season tour of North America, alongside Netherlands Under 21 international Nathan Aké, Jeremie Boga, and several of the Club’s brightest and most exciting young prospects: Tammy Abraham, Charly Musonda, Josimar Quintero, Reece Mitchell, Kasey Palmer and FA Youth Cup winning captain Charlie Colkett.
The Shots, though, remain unbeaten in four pre-season friendlies thus far, and on Saturday came from behind to seal late victory at Basingstoke Town. Now, Barry Smith leads his new squad against the Blues’ development team which continues to provide a flow of players for Jose Mourinho’s first-team.
The Blues began their own pre-season preparations with a 1-0 win at Kingstonian, as 17 year-old Tammy Abraham continued his incredible goalscoring run. Viveash’s team have since enjoyed a spectacular 4-4 draw with Bergerac-Perigord, in south-west France, and lost 2-1 against Red Bull Salzburg’s Under 23 side.
19 year-old Reece Mitchell scored a hat-trick against Bergerac-Perigord as Chelsea recovered from an early 0-2 deficit. Abraham notched the other goal, from the penalty spot, to add to the 41 he scored last season.
Solanke also scored 41 goals in 2014-15, and made his first-team debut in the Champions League last October as well as being named as a substitute for The Blues’ 1-0 Premier League win at Old Trafford in April. Midfielder Kasey Palmer continues to build a formidable reputation for scoring spectacular goals (here, here and here) whilst the prodigiously-talented 17 year-old Ecuadorian winger Josimar Quintero signed from Barcelona last summer.
Belgium Under 21 international winger Charly Musonda has been linked with a loan move to Ligue 1 side Marseille, whilst midfielder Charlie Colkett, who was part of the first-team’s post-season tour of Thailand, has been called Chelsea’s “best kept secret”. Another midfielder, John Swift, has already made his Football League debut in a loan spell at League One Swindon Town.
Kick-off is 7.45pm, with admission £10 for adults and £5 for concessions. All children under 11 are admitted FREE when accompanied by a paying adult.
To minimise security and stewarding costs, only the North Stand will be open for this match. The John McGinty Lounge and EBB Lounge will be available for refreshment before and after the game.