Billy Gilmour handed Frank Lampard a huge boost on Friday as he returned to Chelsea training for the first time since his knee injury – and the young midfielder wasted little time in making marquee summer signing Timo Werner look a little silly.
Gilmour, 19, burst onto the scene midway through last term with a string of outstanding displays for Chelsea, including a man-of-the-match performance at home to Liverpool to help secure his side a place in the FA Cup quarter-finals.
However, Gilmour missed the end of the 2019/20 campaign after coming off with a serious knee problem in the dying moments of Chelsea’s win over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park in July.
Gilmour went under the knife and is yet to make an appearance for the Blues this season but it appears the teenager is closing in on his return to first-team action after joining up with his team-mates again for training.
The Scotland Under-21 international was all smiles as he got back into the swing of things again at Cobham and it didn’t take him long to showcase some of that unique talent that Chelsea fans got so used to seeing last season.
Liverpool star Fabinho was on the wrong side of an audacious move from Gilmour when the pair met at Stamford Bridge back in March – and the youngster clearly has no problem producing similar pieces of skill to deceive his own team-mates.
An eagle-eyed photographer at Chelsea’s training ground managed to capture the moment Gimour put the ball through Werner’s legs – and the Scot shared the pictures on Instagram page for the world to see.
Werner’s face shortly after the nutmeg says it all…
Though Gilmour looked to be fit and firing on the training ground, he’s not expected to be available for selection until the end of next month.
Asked about Gilmour’s fitness last week, Lampard said: ‘Billy’s working really well, he’s probably three weeks away from his return.
‘He’s working outside on his own with the physios still, we hope that he’ll integrate with either ourselves or the Under-23s to get some training minutes.
‘So hopefully three or four weeks, probably the other side of the next international break all being well.’
Back in April, Lampard spoke of his delight that a player of Gilmour’s diminutive stature was able to hold his own in Chelsea first-team training.
‘We’ve had a few of the young come through this year and that’s given me great pleasure,’ the Chelsea head coach said.
‘They’re great to work with, they’re like sponges who want to come in and learn.
‘Billy probably gives me as much pleasure as anyone. When you look at Billy he’s quite slight in terms of his size, he’s young, he’s quiet, he’s polite, but Billy moved over to the first team building a while ago because he had to. He trained at such a level.
‘Can you do the real basics right? Billy does them day in, day out.’