Joe Cole says watching Reece James in Chelsea’s pre-season training camp “was like watching [David] Beckham”.
Former Manchester United and England midfielder Beckham was known for his sublime delivery, crossing and free-kicks during his playing career.
Chelsea came from 4-1 down to snatch a 4-4 draw from a spellbinding Champions League encounter against last season’s semi-finalists.
James was introduced a second-half substitute for the Blues, scoring the equalising goal and being selected for special praise from ex-Chelsea midfielder Cole.
“When I was playing in America [with Tampa Bay Rowdies], I came around to train with the kids,” Cole told BT Sport on joining Chelsea on a pre-season training camp over the summer.
“We were having shooting session and the kids’ shooting was erratic, but James was on the money, on the money, whipping crosses, it was like watching Beckham.”
Following Chelsea’s comeback against Ajax, James said: “It was a crazy game.
“They were hard to break down and we took advantage of them going down to nine men, it was a shame we couldn’t win. Scoring a goal is a bonus.
“The manager told me to come on and liven the boys up, we had chances to win it but from where we were at half-time it’s a good result.
“I had some mad nights and some great nights, but for everything that it was, it was certainly right up there.
“Chelsea fans know the story of what we have done in the Champions League but I don’t really want to talk about that.
“For a performance like today you need personalities and characters – at 4-1 down it is easy to give it away and give it up.”
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