The Academy Week - More Loans and Friendlies

With the start of the season fast approaching things really start to pick up speed with regards to the preparations that need to be made ...

With the start of the season fast approaching things really start to pick up speed with regards to the preparations that need to be made to get everyone ready for the start of the season wherever they may be playing, so with that in mind lets take a look and see what happened in the Chelsea Academy last week.

First up was friendly action as the U21's took on Crawley, in the team was a mixture of players who you would consider regular U21's players and players who need game time before they head out on loan for the season, the team for this game was:

First XI: Collins, Kane, Brady, Davey, Dabo, McEachran, Perica, Houghton, Bamford, Saville, Palmer
Subs: Kiwomya, Granger, Rodriguez, Colkett, Mitchell, Aina and Jon Harley making up the numbers

There was also a familiar face in the Crawley team as former academy player Jimmy Smith squared up against his former team. It was a tough workout for the team and at half time they found themselves 2 - 0 down to the hosts with work to do. Chelsea left it late but with 10 minutes to go they scored through Ola Aina which was quickly followed by Charlie Colkett scoring from an in swinging free kick that everyone missed. Finally right at the end Charly Musonda scored with a speculative effort that the Crawley keeper will have nightmares about. It was a good workout for the boys and will have done them good, they are highlights of the game from Crawley here:

Also on that day the U18's were in Pre Season action against Swansea at the Cobham training ground, they secured for themselves another good win as they beat the guests 2 - 0 with goals from Ike Ugbo and Hubert Adamczyk.

Next up was confirmation of another loan move as Chelsea confirmed that Oriol Romeu has moved to the Bundesliga and joined Stuttgart for the season as was covered already on the blog here.

There was another round of pre season friendly fixtures as both the U21's and the U18's traveled to Brighton for matches and the U21's played their game with a few more faces as Domonic Solanke, Mitchell Beeney and Nathaniel Chalobah return from Jose's sessions to join back up with the U21's and the game eventually finished in a 1 - 1 draw Chelsea's goal coming from a Charly Musonda spot kick.

Meanwhile the U18's continued their impressive winning pre season as they ran out 4 - 2 winners. Quintero, Adamczyk and Abraham grabbing the goals in that game which continued a very impressive winning streak so far which is all the better considering that new manager Edwards is using a young U18's squad.

There was confirmation this week of the U18's league fixtures for the coming season and once again there are changes. The groups start as regional and Chelsea will play home and away fixtures against all the teams in their region which are Southampton, Arsenal, Leicester City, West Ham, West Brom, Tottenham, Norwich, Aston Villa, Brighton, Fulham and Reading.

After the initial regional program the groups get split once again, this time depending on where they finished in their regional group, so the top 4 teams from each region will go into group A, 5th to 8th place from each group go into group B and 9th to 12th place go into group C. There will then be 7 more fixtures in this set up and the winner of group A will be crowned U18's league Champions. It is a good number of fixtures for the U18's with a total of 29 league games to be played.

Then there was confirmation of the 13th loan move of the summer so far as it was confirmed that Joao Rodriguez the young Colombian striker will spend the season with Claude Makelele's new club in Ligue 1, Bastia. Rodriguez like Bertrand Traore cannot feature for any of Chelsea's sides due to work permit issues but providing he can get the games needed this will be a good and challenging loan move for the young man and he will watched closely right here on this blog throughout the season.

On Thursday there was confirmation of another departure from the club although this time it was not a loan move as Billy Clifford was released from Chelsea and joined Walsall on a permanent basis. It was always likely that Clifford would move on this season as he has struggled for football at any level for the last couple of seasons and he needed the break now to reignite what will be a decent footballing career i am sure has the young man has a lot of talent and versatility to make it in the game. Best of luck to him in his new venture.

So that was the week in the Academy, a packed week as you would expect this time of the season and next week is likely to be little different. Plenty of stories circulating about potential loan moves. Atsu to Everton, McEachran to Vitesse and Bamford and Saville off to Middlesbrough. We will see if any of these come through in time but for now the U21's will be action on Sunday against Derby County and the U18's finish off a pre season tournament at Cobham against Arsenal, Spurs, Villa and Man Utd.

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