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Jay Dasilva: Steps Up

09/10/2017

This interview was first published on the official Chelsea website.

Jay, first of all, what was the thinking behind your return to Charlton, and how has it been going this season?


I didn’t play too much last season, only towards the end of the season did I get in the team. I thought I’d go back and do it properly, get a full season under my belt, and play as many games as I could.

It’s going well. I am playing pretty much every game. That exposure to first team football has been good.

Results wise, we started off well, then we didn’t win for a few games, but we won on Saturday and we are in the play-off positions at the moment. It’s been a pretty good start to the season I would say.

How does League One football compare to youth football?

The main difference is the intensity. It’s much quicker. A lot of the games are non-stop. There isn’t a lot of time on the ball. Technically it is not massively different but there are some quality players who have played in the Premier League and found themselves in League One.

Playing in front of crowds has been a big difference too, but it’s what everyone aspires to be doing. At first it takes you back but it’s something I enjoy.

I have a good relationship with the fans and it keeps building. From the start they gave me a good reception and have given me a lot of support since. I am grateful for that.

You’ve been playing at left-back. How have you balanced your game between attack and defence?

I like to show my offensive side of the game as much as I can, and affect the game. The style of play at Charlton is good for that. I can push on quite a lot down the left side.

As important is the defensive side of things. There are a lot of crosses and long balls going in to the box that need defending; a lot of aerial battles, second balls and knockdowns. You need to be ready to cover. That sort of defensive stuff goes on a lot and being switched on to that is important, and something I am improving at.

There’s a good balance between youth and experience in the Charlton team at the moment…

Definitely. I am learning a lot off my team-mates. There are a good bunch of lads in the dressing room. As soon as I came in they were very welcoming.

Another good thing is that there are quite a few young players in the team. That was good for me settling in, to be around people my age. I get along well with them.

Tell us about winning the Euros with England’s Under-19s, and as captain too…


That was a very proud moment for me, my family and my friends. It is something I will remember for the rest of my life. It was very special. It was the first trophy I have ever won for England and to captain the side to victory was a special thing for me. I was honoured. It was a great experience.

In the summer we showed at all age levels we have some real talent coming through in England, and we showed we can win trophies against the best teams in Europe and the world. It definitely feels good looking towards the future.

What are your targets for the rest of the season?

Personally I want to play as many games as I can and get more first team experience under my belt, and keep learning the game throughout the season. Collectively, hopefully we can gain promotion this season. That would be a great achievement and another thing to add to my list.