Chelsea broke into the top 10 for the youngest starting XIs in Premier League history on Wednesday against Crystal Palace, so we identified the other nine.

The English Premier League had its first new entry into the 10 youngest starting XIs in over six years on Wednesday as Chelsea named their most youthful top-flight side since at least 1992.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side defeated Crystal Palace 2-1 at Stamford Bridge thanks to a late Noni Madueke penalty after Michael Olise had cancelled out Mykhailo Mudryk’s opener.

Chelsea starting XI vs Crystal Palace

With an average age of 23 years and 21 days, Chelsea’s lineup was the eighth-youngest starting XI in Premier League history – although, considering how many young players they’ve signed over the past 18 months, they’d have almost certainly cracked the top 10 earlier were it not for the presence of 39-year-old Thiago Silva.

Read on for the lowdown on the 10 youngest starting XIs in Premier League history.

1. 20 Years, 181 Days – Fulham 1-0 MIDDLESBROUGH, 7 May 2006

The youngest starting XI in Premier League history was named by Middlesbrough back in May 2006 with an average age of 20 years and 181 days. It remains younger on average than any other lineup by more than two years.

Middlesbrough boss Steve McClaren, who had only a few days earlier been appointed the next England manager, felt it was necessary to rest as many of his regulars as possible with the UEFA Cup final on the horizon, meaning the kids got a run-out.

They may not have had enough to get a result at Craven Cottage, but McClaren was “proud” to field a largely homegrown side in a time when Middlesbrough’s academy was very highly regarded.

Steve McClaren during Fulham vs Middlesbrough

This was McClaren’s last Premier League match in charge of the club – his tenure ended the following week with a 4-0 defeat to Sevilla in the UEFA Cup showpiece.

Middlesbrough Starting XI: Ross Turnbull, Andrew Davies, Matthew Bates, David Wheater, Andrew Taylor, James Morrison, Jason Kennedy, Lee Cattermole, Malcolm Christie, Danny Graham, Adam Johnson.

2. 22 Years, 237 Days – Portsmouth 0-3 ARSENAL, 2 May 2009

The second-youngest Premier League team ever was named by Arsenal three years later, though the average age was more than two years older than that Middlesbrough side.

Arsène Wenger was already renowned for his ability to develop talented young players, but after the construction of Emirates Stadium left insufficient funds to sign superstars, the manager had to rely increasingly on players with potential.

This was the youngest starting lineup Wenger ever fielded in the Premier League, with Theo Walcott, Denilson, Aaron Ramsey and Carlos Vela among those in the side.

On this occasion, they did enough to earn a comfortable victory to extend their unbeaten run at the time to 21 league games and secure Champions League football for the 2009-10 season, with Nicklas Bendtner (two) and Vela getting the goals.

Arsenal Starting XI: Lukasz Fabianski, Bacary Sagna, Alex Song, Johan Djourou, Emmanuel Eboué, Theo Walcott, Denilson, Aaron Ramsey, Andrey Arshavin, Nicklas Bendtner, Carlos Vela.

Arsenal starting XI vs Portsmouth

3. 22 Years, 284 Days – MANCHESTER UNITED 2-0 Crystal Palace, 21 May 2017

Manchester United’s most successful era in the Premier League was defined by a group of young players who came through their academy and led the club to a host of trophies; that may not be the case for this particular team that faced Palace in May 2017, but it’s fitting that they take a place in the top 10.

This was the final match in a largely disappointing Premier League campaign, as United finished sixth. Nevertheless, it was still a day to remember for a few young players as Joel Pereira, Demetri Mitchell, Scott McTominay and Josh Harrop were all given their debuts.

Harrop even got on the scoresheet, while Angel Gomes became the club’s youngest ever Premier League player at 16 years and 263 days old with his late introduction for Wayne Rooney in his final league match for the club.

José Mourinho’s decision to ring the changes was largely down to United taking part in the UEFA Europa League final a few days later – they beat Ajax to lift that trophy, salvaging a hint of dignity at the end of an unimpressive season.

Man Utd Starting XI: Joel Pereira, Timothy Fosu-Mensah, Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, Demetri Mitchell, Scott McTominay, Axel Tuanzebe, Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard, Josh Harrop, Wayne Rooney.

Man Utd Starting XI vs Crystal Palace

4. 22 Years, 315 Days – Sunderland 0-1 ARSENAL, 11 May 2008

Arsenal are the only club to appear in this top 10 more than once – in fact, they’re in it four times, with all of those occasions coming in 2008 or 2009; Wenger was the real-life embodiment of many Football Manager players’ dreams for a few years.

While this era might not be seen as especially successful for the Gunners and Wenger, his young guns were in the running for the Premier League nearly all season, finishing only four points behind a Man Utd side spearheaded by Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney and Carlos Tevez.

“Quality-wise, we’ve been remarkable the whole season. We lost a 100m race by a fraction of a second,” Wenger said after this win over Sunderland. “It doesn’t mean we have not made a good 100m. To have a great 100m, you need three or four who compete for the final place.”

Walcott got Arsenal’s winner in this game, which very much had an end-of-season vibe to it with Sunderland also already having confirmed their safety.

Arsenal Starting XI: Lukasz Fabianski, Alex Song, Philippe Senderos, Johan Djourou, Gael Clichy, Emmanuel Eboué, Denilson, Gilberto Silva, Theo Walcott, Emmanuel Adebayor, Nicklas Bendtner.

Arsenal vs Sunderland starting XI

5. 22 Years, 341 Days – Manchester United 3-0 LEEDS UNITED, 21 October 2000

Leeds faced their bitter rivals in October 2000 amid something of an injury crisis following midweek Champions League exploits, which forced them to name a much-changed lineup.

They did a good job of holding United at bay for a while, but the second-half introduction of David Beckham for the injured Roy Keane proved vital for the hosts at Old Trafford.

The right-sided midfielder played a role in Dwight Yorke’s opener, saw a deflected free-kick find the net and then set up Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for the third.

In the Leeds team that day, Paul Robinson, Alan Smith, Jonathan Woodgate, Matt Jones and Stephen McPhail were all 21 or younger.

Leeds Starting XI: Paul Robinson, Gary Kelly, Dominic Matteo, Danny Hay, Jonathan Woodgate, Lee Bowyer, Stephen McPhail, Jacob Burns, Matt Jones, Alan Smith, Mark Viduka.

The Rest of the 10 Youngest Premier League Starting XIs

6. 22 Years, 360 Days – Aston Villa 4-2 MANCHESTER CITY, 17 August 2008

Man City Starting XI: Joe Hart, Vedran Corluka, Micah Richards, Tal Ben-Haim, Javier Garrido, Kelvin Etuhu, Gelson Fernandes, Michael Johnson, Martin Petrov, Elano, Ched Evans.

7. 23 Years, 14 Days – EVERTON 3-2 Bolton Wanderers, 28 December 1997

Everton Starting XI: Thomas Myhre, Richard Dunne, Carl Tiler, Michael Ball, Andy Hinchcliffe, Tony Thomas, John Oster, Nick Barmby, Gareth Farrelly, Danny Cadamarteri, Duncan Ferguson.

8. 23 Years, 21 Days – CHELSEA 2-1 Crystal Palace, 27 December 2023

Chelsea Starting XI: Djordje Petrovic, Malo Gusto, Axel Disasi, Benoît Badiashile, Levi Colwill, Conor Gallagher, Moisés Caicedo, Ian Maatsen, Christopher Nknunku, Mykhailo Mudryk, Armando Broja, Nicolas Jackson.

9. 23 Years, 27 Days – ARSENAL 4-0 Wigan Athletic, 11 April 2009

Arsenal Starting XI: Vito Mannone, Bacary Sagna, Thomas Vermaelen, William Gallas, Gael Clichy, Emmanuel Eboué, Abou Diaby, Cesc Fàbregas, Alex Song, Eduardo, Robin van Persie.

10. 23 Years, 47 Days – Derby County 2-6 ARSENAL, 28 April 2008

Arsenal Starting XI: Lukasz Fabianski, Kolo Touré, William Gallas, Alex Song, Gael Clichy, Emmanuel Eboué, Cesc Fàbregas, Denilson, Theo Walcott, Robin van Persie, Nicklas Bendtner.

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