Chelsea Football Club is pleased to announce that Reece James has signed a new six-year contract.
A Cobham graduate who trained with us for the first time at the age of six, James has emerged as one of the best young players in the game. His skill, cross-bending ability, positioning and athletic performance mean he is as comfortable in midfield or in three defense as he is in linebacker or full-back, and now having committed to the club until 2028, Blues fans can enjoy James’ incredible talent for much longer.
Upon agreeing to the new contract, Chairman Todd Boehle said: “We are delighted to award Reese a new long-term contract at Chelsea. He is a fantastic player and a true Chelsea man, and we all look forward to watching him continue to thrive at Stamford Bridge.”
Behdad Eghbali and Jose e Feliciano, the controlling owners said: “Reis is a very special footballer and we love having him at Chelsea under our ownership. His combination of physical and technical ability is a great asset to our team now and for many years to come.
Rhys James said: “I am over my new contract and I am grateful to the fans, the new ownership and everyone involved with the club. I can’t wait to see what the future holds, and I’m sure we’ll have a chance to win many titles.
I grew up supporting this club and I’ve been here since I was six. I put pen to paper on a new deal because this is the club I want to be in. I’d like to give a special thanks to the fans, I’m here to stay and we have a bright future ahead.
James, who turns 23 in December, progressed through our Development Center program and thrived for academy teams before taking his first steps into the professional game in 2018/19 on loan at Wigan Athletic. He was a huge hit, and was promoted in the end-of-season awards for the Latics, receiving 96 percent of the votes in their Player of the Year poll.
He had to wait until September 2019 to make his Chelsea debut after suffering an injury on international duty that summer, but he celebrated the occasion, a Carabao Cup third round match against Grimsby, with a superb long-range shot.
James was a constant presence in the Chelsea squad led by Frank Lampard after that, proving his prowess at right-back as he did at full-back. His highlight was the moment he became our youngest goalscorer in the Champions League after a draw against Ajax, capping a brilliant comeback from 4-1 down and causing raves inside the bridge.
James started the 2020/21 campaign by scoring a stunning goal in Brighton, and finished the match with England with the Champions League medal in his hand. He was one of the many star actors in Porto, which provides further evidence of how comfortable he is on the big stage.
The offensive threat to James from the right-back only increased last season. Despite being held off by a muscle injury that kept him off the field for the best part of three months, he still scored six goals and provided 10 assists in all competitions, including beautiful strikes in sweeping wins against Arsenal and Juventus, and a fine brace against Newcastle. in St. James’ Park.
He also scored the decisive penalty in two Carabao Cup penalty shootout matches, so it comes as no surprise that his absence was heavily felt in the early months of this year. When he returned to his fitness, his quality and calm playing from tight positions caught attention in our thrilling win at the Bernabeu as Chelsea nearly overcame a major deficit in the first leg. Once again, the European football community has sat down and taken notice.
James has already played 128 games for the Blues and with this new long-term contract, that number will increase exponentially in the coming years. Congratulations, Reese!