Ethan Ampadu Biography
Ethan Ampadu is a professional footballer who plays for English Premier League club Chelsea and the Welsh national team. He is a versatile player who primarily played in the midfield for his club youth team, but is also a strong defense candidate who is good in the tackle, wins the ball well and has good anticipation. Interestingly, the highly rated midfielder for the Welsh national youth team had made his club career debut for Exeter City as a centre-back. He was named the Man of the Match for the game as he showcased stunning performance in keeping the two divisions higher opponents goal-less. He drew attention in the summer of 2016 for training with Wales' Euro squad before the tournament, following which he was regularly seen for Exeter's first-team in preseason. As a player, he is often compared to Wales Euro stars Aaron Ramsey and Joe Allen. One of the reasons why he is considered a hot centre back is he has a greater vertical jump than most of his opponents, which allows him to head the ball better than his rivals. According to Wales captain Ashley Williams, Ampadu can be his replacement in the team's defense following his retirement.
- Ethan Kwame Colm Raymond Ampadu was born on September 14, 2000, in Exeter, Devon to former footballer Kwame Ampadu. His father was a former lower league player who played as a midfielder for clubs like Arsenal, Swansea City, Leyton Orient and Exeter City.
- In 2008, Ethan Ampadu began training at the Exeter City youth academy where his father coached the U18 team before moving to Arsenal. While Ethan began playing at senior level while still in school, he had limited appearances for the team because of his GCSEs in early 2017.
- Ethan Ampadu made his senior club debut on August 9, 2016, at the age of 15 years 10 months and 26 days, in a EFL Cup first round match against Brentford at St James Park. Playing full 120 minutes for Exeter City, he broke the previous 87-year-old club record held by Cliff Bastin as Exeter's youngest player.
- He made another record by bagging the Man of the Match honor in his debut game. This performance also made him a prime recruitment candidate for renowned clubs like Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City, all of which sought to sign the youngster to their team.
- He made his league debut one week later against Crawley Town in EFL League Two, and even though his team lost the match by 0-1, he earned praise for his performance. He went on to play 13 matches for the club throughout the season.
- In October 2016, he shined in their home match against Chelsea in the Checkatrade Trophy during which Exeter stunned the Blues with a quick 3-0 lead and finished the game 3-2. While Chelsea had a team full of their promising U-21 players, the 16-year-old Exeter youngster was the best player on the field – something that reportedly convinced the club to recruit him the following year.
- Chelsea FC led the race to get him into their fold, and made a formal offer of compensation to Exeter to sign him in January 2017, which was turned down by Exeter. The club reportedly asked for as much as £3million, which the Blues were not prepared to pay.
- Despite the disagreement over the compensation, on July 1st, 2017, it was announced that he had signed with the Premier League club. The two clubs had extensive negotiations over the valuation of the player well into November that year, when Exeter City chairman Julian Tagg mentioned going to a tribunal over the issue.
- Ethan Ampadu made his debut for Chelsea in an EFL Cup third round match against Nottingham Forest on September 20, 2017 as a 55th minute substitute for Cesc Fàbregas. At the age of 17, he became the youngest player to debut for the club in over ten years, as well as the first player born in the 2000s to play for its senior team.
- He made his Premier League debut for Chelsea against Huddersfield Town on December 12 as a substitute with 10 minutes remaining to the game. At 17 years and 89 days, he became the second youngest player to make an appearance in the Premier League for the club behind Jody Morris in 1996.
- Ethan Ampadu began his international career with the Wales national football team in their U-14, U-15, U-16 and U-17 squads. He was the captain of the Welsh U-16 team that registered a win over England to earn the Victory Shield for the first time in 66 years.
- A highly rated player, he was soon promoted to the U-17 team while he was still eligible for the U-16 squad. He showed his class in the new team as well, and helped Wales beat France for the first time in history.
- While he qualified for the Welsh team as it was his mother's birthplace, his British-born father had played for Ireland Under-21, as well as 144 matches for the Welsh club Swansea between 1994 and 1998. Thanks to Ethan’s exceptional performance, he was invited to join the English national youth team, and also qualified to play for Ireland and Ghana teams as his father had Irish and Ghanaian roots.
- To goad the youngster to keep playing for the Welsh team at the senior level, Wales invited him to train with Gareth Bale and the rest of the senior squad ahead of Euro 2016. Welsh professional football manager, Chris Coleman, also allowed him access to the Cardiff City Stadium dressing room before the matches to rub shoulders with top level national players.
- He had also attended a couple of English age-grade camps, which sparked rumors that he might choose to play for England. However, he eventually decided to stay with the Welsh national team as he liked the 'atmosphere' there.
- He was called into the senior Welsh team for their World Cup qualifier with Serbia on May 26, 2017, but did not play in the game. He subsequently made his national debut on November 10 as a 63rd-minute substitute for Joe Ledley in a 2–0 defeat to France at the Stade de France.
- Ethan Ampadu won the Man of the Match award on his debut match for Exeter City against Brentford. Making his club debut at 15 years 10 months and 26 days, he became the club's youngest ever player, breaking an 87-year-old record.
- Ethan Ampadu was eligible to play for four teams at the national level thanks to his family background. While his mother is from Wales, his father was born in England to an Irish mother and Ghanaian father.
- Because Ethan Ampadu's father is now the coach of the U18s team of Arsenal at the club's Academy, it was once thought that he may join the club and train under his father. While the team was interested in signing him once, it is not known why he did not end up there.
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