Chelsea’s Colwill can be ‘one of the greatest’ – Pochettino

Mauricio Pochettino has backed Levi Colwill and insisted the Chelsea youngster is part of his plans.

Colwill, 20, spent last season on loan at Brighton, who want to sign him on a permanent deal.

Chelsea, however, have rejected offers from the Seagulls and seem determined to keep the centre-back.

He gave away a penalty against Brighton in a pre-season friendly in Philadelphia, where Pochettino’s side won 4-3.

But after the game the Blues’ new head coach was quick to shoot down speculation over Colwill’s future – and tipped him for a bright future.

Pochetino said: “He is our player and he is going to continue with us.

“I am happy with him, his performance was good today – better than what I expected because it is only the first game with us after the season with Brighton.

“I am so happy, he can be one of the greatest centre-backs in England.”

New signings Christopher Nkunku and Nicolas Jackson scored against the Seagulls. It was Nkunku’s second goal in as many games.

Conor Gallagher and Mykhailo Mudryk also got on the scoresheet.

Jackson was hugely impressive after coming on as a substitute.

“I think when Chelsea sign a player like him it’s because they detect something important in quality and talent,” Pochettino said.

“He is a big talent, he needs time to adapt to the new club, the Premier League.

“He is young also, we need to help him to develop and evolve and be an important player for Chelsea.”