Tariq Lamptey has revealed that leaving boyhood club Chelsea was one of the toughest decisions he’s ever had to make but the youngster is confident he joined the perfect team for his development in Brighton.
The 20-year-old signed for Brighton on the final day of the last January transfer window and hasn’t looked back since, establishing himself as one of the breakout stars of the 2020/21 season.
Just weeks before the move, Lamptey made his Chelsea debut as a substitute in the side’s 2-1 victory away to Arsenal in the Premier League and the right-back also came off the bench against Hull and Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup.
But the England Under-21 international decided to he had to look elsewhere for regular playing time, with Reece James blocking his path to Frank Lampard’s first-team.
‘I’m an ambitious boy. I look at things and enjoy them in the moment, but the next day I’m looking to see what I need to improve on and how I can stay at that level,’ Lamptey told 90min.
‘I’m always looking for a chance to play again and that moment made me even more hungry. I’d had a taste of it and I wasn’t going to let it go.
‘I sat down with the coaches, family members and agents and thought about what’s best for me. It was a really tough decision.
‘Being at a club since the age of nine, going up through the whole system and making your first-team debut, everything happened so quickly, but I had to look at where I would get the most football and how I could take my game to the next level.
‘It wasn’t an easy decision and I thought about it every day but the opportunity came for me to come to Brighton, which is a fantastic club with a really good plan for the team and the move made a lot of sense.
‘There was quite a few options to go to, but I sat down with my family and talked about where would be best for me, where could help me develop, and I thought Brighton would be the best club for me.’
The full-back impressed against former club Chelsea on the first day of the campaign but was ultimately on the losing side, with Jorginho, James and Kurt Zouma all getting on the scoresheet at the Amex Stadium.