Charly Musonda believes his 18-month loan deal at Celtic can help him become a Chelsea regular.
The 21-year-old Stamford Bridge attacker joined the Scottish champions on Monday after making just seven appearances for the big-spending London giants this season following a loan spell at Spanish club Real Betis.
The Belgium under-21 player made his debut for Brendan Rodgers’ side as a second-half substitute in the 3-1 Ladbrokes Premiership win over Hearts at Parkhead last night and is certain he is at the right club to progress his career.
“At this stage of my development I have to be lucky to get games, especially at a club like Chelsea,” he said.
“With every opportunity I got I was happy to be able to play games.
“Without having the step I had this season at Chelsea I wouldn’t be here.
“You have to be patient. I am still very young. I am 21 years old. I went to Chelsea at 15 so it takes many years.
“Most of the players who play there are transfers who come at 24/25, at the peak of their career, they are mature, they have played Champions League football and that is the players they go for.
“There is no point me staying at Chelsea if it is not to play week in, week out. I am very young so the most important thing is to play.
“I am at the start of my career and I have no doubt that at 24/25 I will be as good to play for a big, big club.
“I am at one now, I am lucky to be here and happy to have the opportunity to be at a big club like Celtic at 21 and to be able to play here is a dream.
“I have a manager that has developed a lot of good players at big clubs so I think it is perfect for me.”
Musonda believes the demands of playing for Celtic will prove invaluable.
“It had to be the youth team, then the reserves and then I went to Spain and came back and I am still trying to find my way, really,” said the Belgian.
“Celtic is a team that needs to win. As a youngster coming from Chelsea, it is the same type of pressure.
“That is the most important thing for me.”
Musonda was taken aback by the noisy reception he got from the Celtic fans when he replaced James Forrest in the second half on Tuesday night.
He said: “It was amazing to play in front of the fans at Celtic Park.
“I didn’t think it was going to be that loud. It shows how much they care about me already so I am very happy about that.
“I look forward to playing more games here.
“The crowd at Betis was quite loud as well but none of it compares to what I experienced yesterday. It was unbelievable to get such a reception.”