Mukhtar Ali

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Mukhtar Ali
0Full Name Mukhtar Abdullahi Ali
0Date of Birth 30th October 1997
0Place of Birth Mogadishu, Somalia
0Position Defender/Midfielder
0Chelsea career 2008 - 2018
0Debut n/a
0Games (goals) n/a
0Other clubs Leyton Orient
Vitesse Arnhem (loan)

Mukhtar Ali is a defender or midfielder who formerly played in Chelsea's Academy.


Pre-Chelsea career

Mukhtar joined Chelsea's academy from Leyton Orient as an Under-11.

Chelsea career

Mukhtar made his Under-18 debut against Everton in April 2013 whilst still an Under-15. He earned a regular squad place under Adi Viveash ahead of the 2013-14 season and scored his first youth team goal away to Leicester City in November. His performances earned positive reviews and he made a maiden appearance in European competition by featuring in the UEFA Youth League victory over Steaua Bucharest in December.

With the youth team becoming ever younger towards the end of the season he was called upon to play something of a leadership role despite being a schoolboy himself; his natural calmness and authority in midfield lending itself well to such a duty. He was named in an Under-21 matchday squad towards the end of the season; a sign of the progress made over the course of the campaign. The same could then be said of his first year as a scholar in 2014-15; his experience proved vital in Under-18 league games and he was a reliable option from the bench to help secure results as Chelsea won both the FA Youth Cup and the UEFA Youth League. He finished up by making an Under-21 debut at Stamford Bridge against West Ham in May 2015.

2015-16 saw him emerge from a group of midfielders including Ruben Sammut and Isaac Christie-Davies to become Adi Viveash's choice of young midfield to take with him permanently to Under-21 level, and he also established himself as a first choice in the 2015-16 UEFA Youth League and 2015-16 FA Youth Cup-winning teams, becoming the only player in the academy to be an ever-present in both competitions. With 42 appearances in all competitions he was the second-leading appearance maker in the academy and was also nominated for International Somali Sportsman of the Year.

11 more appearances for the Development Squad followed before he went out on his first loan, joining Lewis Baker, Matt Miazga and Nathan at partner club Vitesse Arnhem. He didn't start a match there but was instead a midfield backup, and collected a winners' medal in the Dutch Cup. That then led to a permanent move in July 2017 as he signed a three-year deal with the Arnhem club.


Mukhtar has been capped by England at Under-16 and Under-17 level. He is also eligible to play for Somalia.

Career statistics

Youth, Reserve and Under-21 Football

Season Under-18 Euro U19 Under-21 Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
2012-13 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
2013-14 22 2 1 0 0 0 23 2
2014-15 28 6 0 0 1 0 29 6
2015-16 17 6 10 0 15 1 42 7
2016-17 - - - - 11 3 11 3
Total 69 14 11 0 27 4 107 18

First team

Season Club Prem FA Cup League Cup Europe Other Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
2016-17 Vitesse Arnhem (loan) 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 0
Total 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 0

(Statistics accurate as of the end of the 2016-17 season)

Career honours

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