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Chelsea's former chief scout and director of youth development Frank Arnesen claims there was no chance for young players to make their mark on the first team during his time at Stamford Bridge.
The Dane, 56, joined the Blues from Tottenham in June 2005 and was credited with helping to sign the likes of Salomon Kalou, Florent Malouda and John Obi Mikel.
He also faced criticism from some quarters for not bringing through more of the club's own talented youngsters.
However, Arnesen, who eventually resigned as sporting director and left Stamford Bridge in 2011, feels his task was complicated by Chelsea's pursuit of instant success.
Speaking to the London Evening Standard, Arnesen said: "At Chelsea, we had fantastic talent, we built up marvellous players, but they needed to be given a chance and they never were. The pressure is so big.
"Managers in England are going out and buying players, the level is high, and it is difficult for them because if they lose two or three games, they are gone."
Arnesen, however, insists his time at Chelsea was well spent.
He added: "I am very proud of what I did. I did a fantastic job. I made the club a lot of money. I bought players for small amounts and they were sold for a lot of money.
"I am talking about players like [Daniel] Sturridge, [Fabio] Borini and [Miroslav] Stoch - they ended up being sold for about £30million and that pays for the academy.
"I am happy with many of the players I signed for Chelsea; just think, Borini and Sturridge are now at Liverpool, Stoch scored the FIFA goal of the year for Fenerbahce, Nemanja Matic is the star man at Benfica.
"Then you have Jeffrey Bruma [Hamburg], Gael Kakuta and Patrick van Aanholt [both Vitesse Arnhem], who are doing very well on loan.
"There is Josh McEachran and Ryan Bertrand, too. Some don't get the chance for the Chelsea first team now, but they will."