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Chelsea are pioneering a "coaching revolution" by loaning out a member of their academy management team to pick up first-team experience in the Football League.

James Simmonds works as the Blues' Under-18 assistant manager and will spend the 2021/22 season working alongside AFC Wimbledon boss Mark Robinson.

Robinson pitched the idea of loaning staff looking for experience coaching first-team players during a meeting with Chelsea chiefs, who were left hugely impressed by his proposal.

The two clubs subsequently reached an agreement for Simmonds to join the League One side on a secondment, with Robinson citing last season's previous positive experience working alongside then-England Under-17 coach Justin Cochrane.

Simmonds (left) was on Chelsea's academy ranks as a child and later returned as a coach

"When I made a presentation to Chelsea about us loaning their best young professionals I also mentioned the possibility of us bringing in their best young coaches and giving them first-team experience," he told the Dons' official website .

Robinson added: "I was really pleased with how it worked with Justin Cochrane from the England set-up last season.

"We benefitted from his coaching ideas and general love of the game and I know he benefitted from the experience he gained with us.

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"It will be exactly the same with James, who has been coaching with Chelsea for 10 years.

"He is a top-quality coach, who has a wonderful enthusiasm about him and will come to us with fresh eyes, which is healthy when you are continually evolving your working environment and building a culture."

Chelsea hope Simmonds – who came through their academy ranks with the likes of Scott Sinclair, Michael Mancienne, Ryan Bertrand and Scott Sinclair – will develop as a coach during his time at Plough Lane.

Will loaning out coaches become commonplace in years to come? Have your say in the comments.

The former Republic of Ireland youth international spent time with Dover Athletic and the the Glenn Hoddle Academy in Spain before returning to the Blues' Cobham base in a coaching capacity.

Wimbledon, meanwhile, will be expecting the new member of Robinson's team to help them improve on last season's 19th-place finish in the third tier.

Chelsea are no stranger to loaning out countless players – in fact, they have a reputation for it – but sending out a member of staff in search of experience is a new strategy.

Last season, the Blues agreed to loan out an eye-watering total of 39 players across the summer and winter transfer windows.

So far this window, loans out have been few and far between but Chelsea have already generated significant income from selling Fikayo Tomori to AC Milan for £25million.

The English centre-back initially joined the Serie A giants on loan in January and his impressive form prompted San Siro chiefs to sign him permanently.