Joe Cole has harsh message for Gilmour after poor display

Chelsea legend Joe Cole says Billy Gilmour’s talent is such that the young midfielder “cannot afford” to play as badly as he did in the 1-0 FA Cup quarter-final win over Leicester.

The 19-year-old Scot was one of three players replaced at the interval, with boss Frank Lampard saying he could have taken off up to nine of the team.

Chelsea were vastly improved in the second half, with substitute Ross Barkley grabbing the winner.

Reece James and Mason Mount also made way at the break.

Cole told BT Sport: “I have no doubt the young players will deal with it I am a massive fan of Billy’s.

“It was his first time playing in the number eight role and the game was very hectic.

“He was a little bit lethargic and that lesson needs to be learned.

“He is so talented but he cannot afford to play like this.

“They need to know what it takes to give Frank Lampard levels of play.”

It was a tough learning experience for Gilmour.

He earned rave reviews for his previous first-team displays but this time was hooked after giving the ball away a number of times during the first period.

“It was one of those games where I had to do something,” Lampard said.

“They (the youngsters) will be top players for this club and have good careers but if I have to do something in games I will do.

“They will take it on the chin. We must learn from the mistakes.”