Wales youngster of Ghanaian descent Ethan Ampadu will be handed a starting spot in Wednesday’s FA Cup third round replay between Chelsea and Norwich City, Blues boss Antonio Conte has revealed.
The 17-year-old is set for another audition, a month after a Man-of-The-Match performance against Bournemouth in the League Cup.
It would be his third start in all competitions since making his first team debut against Nottingham Forest last September.
“He [Ampadu] will start as one of the three central defenders,” Conte said, as reported by his club’s official website.
“He deserves to play. He’s showing that in every game I make this decision, like against Everton and Bournemouth.
“He’s shown me he is ready to play with the right concentration and is ready physically and tactically to play at this level.
“It’s unusual for a player who is only 17, but that shows age is not important if I give you the chance to play and you repay me with a great performance.
“We are talking about a really great prospect for Chelsea for the present and future.”
Born to a father of Ghanaian descent and a Welsh mother, Ampadu currently has two senior caps – both friendlies – for Wales.
Nonetheless, he is still eligible to represent the Black Stars at senior level due to his lack of competitive action for The Dragons.
He was on the bench on four occasions in their 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign, and an appearance could have ruled out the possibility of a switch of international allegiance.
He also remains eligible to play for England and the Republic of Ireland at senior stage.