According to former Chelsea defender Mario Melchiot, young sensation Reece James can compete with Trent Alexander Arnold or Kyle Walker for England’s number one choice. He can be the first-choice at the right-back in the days to come. The 20-year-old has become one of the key players in Frank Lampard’s side this season. It is only his first season in Chelsea’s senior team. James has been so impressive that Melchiot has already started comparing him with the great full-backs in England. He thinks that the Chelsea star can really make a name for himself in the long run.

Melchiot spoke to 888Sport some time ago about this situation. At that point in time, he said, “When you talk about Alexander-Arnold I am excited about him and the way he plays,” 

“He switches the play really comfortably. Wan-Bissaka is more defensive. But Reece James has the ability, he has the strength, he has the speed to keep up with people, and he knows how to work it.”

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The best quality of Reece James is his accurate crossing into the opposition box from the right-wing. It’s only because of Chelsea’s strikers could not capitalize those chances most of the times. James does not have many assists to his name thus far. Apart from crossing ability, James can win tackles. He can also run past players and shoot from distance. People have already seen his goal against Ajax in the Champions League tie in a 4-4 draw at Stamford Bridge this season. 

“There are still a couple of things he needs to add to his game, but if he can become a regular with Chelsea he can compete with those two guys and why would not he want to do that? That is why we play football – to compete with the best.”

Asked about his best position, Reece James expressed his desire to play in midfield. He is so impressive at right-back. Frank Lampard has played him ahead of club captain Cesar Azpilicueta in that area in some games. Sometimes Azpilicueta had to shift into the left-back position to allow James to play at right-back. However, for Wigan last season, he showed his capability to play in midfield as well when he was there on loan.

Mario Melchiot - Wikipedia

He told Sky Sports in an interview a few weeks back: “I probably prefer right-back but there is not much in it.”

“I will happily play right-back and midfield – I have played there enough that I am comfortable playing that position as well.”

James did feature in the warm-up friendly game against Reading last week at Cobham. The Blues naturally dominated the possession. They won the game 1-0 courtesy of a good left-foot finish from Pedro in the first half. The Spaniard will be out of contract at the end of this month. He will be alongside Willian and Willy Caballero who is expected to leave.

The Blues are back in action in the Premier League on 21st June. They will face Aston Villa away in the game. This will be their first match after their impressive 4-0 win over Carlo Ancelotti’s Everton in March. That was before the season got suspended. Lampard’s side is currently occupying the fourth position in the Premier League table with nine games to go.