Frank Lampard has been keen to give youngsters a chance during his first season at Chelsea and he could be turning his attention to youngsters in the transfer market.
The Blues have been linked with a move for 19-year-old Max Bird from Lampard’s previous club, Derby County.
Lampard gave the central midfielder his first team debut last season at the Rams and has been more regular during the current campaign, playing next to Wayne Rooney in the middle of the park.
But is he really an interest of Chelsea’s this summer, or could it be a long-term option for getting him for around the £5million mark?
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football.london spoke to Derby Telegraph’s Richard Cusack on the youngster, who said: “Max Bird is the latest off the Moor Farm conveyor belt with Derby County’s academy churning out talent at a rate of knots.
“In 18 months, Bird, Jayden Bogle, Louie Sibley and Jason Knight have made their first-team bows and are part of Phillip Cocu’s first-team setup.
“Bird was handed his debut in a 4-0 reverse at Aston Villa a little over a year ago as Frank Lampard chopped and changed his line-up at Villa Park.
Chelsea during the break
“The youngster stood out, putting in a mature performance belying his 18 years of age and showing up some of his more senior team-mates.
“Lampard made a big deal of promoting youth with that part of the mandate handed to him by Mel Morris and that is something his successor, Cocu, has continued.
“Bird had to wait for his first League start this season until late December but he hasn’t looked back, making 13 appearances in the Championship.
“Eleven of those games have been with Wayne Rooney, the Manchester United legend the perfect foil for Bird.
“Bird is an all-action midfielder who can snap into the tackle but likes to play the ball.
“With Rooney in the team a…