African All Stars

Lamptey: Brighton & Hove Albion star and Ghana target opens up on Chelsea exit

21:13 SAST 2021/11/30
Tariq Lamptey Chelsea
The 21-year-old sheds light on his resolution to leave The Blues after developing through their academy set-up

Brighton & Hove Albion defender Tariq Lamptey reveals his desire to raise his game contributed to his decision to leave Chelsea for The Seagulls.

Lamptey has been among the standout performers in the Premier League since leaving Chelsea in chase of regular game time in January last year.

His fine form has reportedly attracted the attention of Manchester United, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid, as well as the Ghana national team who are eyeing a nationality switch for the England-born player of Ghanaian parentage.

“I was privileged to be in a good place where they [Chelsea] allowed me to develop and I’m grateful to them,” Lamptey told talkSPORT.

“But I feel it was time to try and get regular game time and just try and take my game to the next level and keep developing. In Brighton, there was a fantastic club who have a good plan and I saw it as a chance to take.

“When I was at Chelsea, Reece James was in the age group older than me. He was always giving me good advice. I’m happy to see him doing well and hopefully, that continues. There was a good academy at Chelsea and they give you the tools you need to try and develop your game.

“It just so happens that they have a lot of players in that position but they’ve got boys all around that can take it to the next level.”

Having joined Brighton in January, Lamptey enjoyed a fruitful half of the 2019-20 season, earning him a contract extension.

He began the 2020-21 term in fine form, earning rave reviews for his performances until December when he suffered an injury that kept him on the sidelines until September.

“The game keeps advancing and as a full-back you have to be prepared to defend first but try and contribute to the team with assists or goals.

“That’s how it is at the moment which is brilliant for me because I love to get forward and also like defending.

“When I was a kid I liked watching Dani Alves and Ronaldinho but I also loved watching Ashley Cole bomb up and down even though it was on the left flank. He had great energy and the technique he had was amazing.”

The 21-year-old has since his injury return made six Premier League appearances, winning the Man of the Match award in the 0-0 draw with Leeds United on Saturday.