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Chelsea goalkeeper Ethan Wady goes on loan to non-league Dartford FC

Taking the scenic route

Chelsea FC v Arsenal FC - Premier League U18 Photo by Clive Howes - Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

One Chelsea goalkeeper arrived with much fanfare after even more anticipation, but like Newton’s Third Law sort of states, if one comes, another must go. Admittedly, that’s a strained simile, but it’s been a long weekend, so you’ll just have to deal with it.

In any case, the player leaving after Édouard Mendy’s arrival isn’t Kepa but rather Academy goalkeeper Ethan Wady, who’s joined Dartford FC for the season. So, really, one’s got nothing to do with the other, but, again: long weekend complete with a pink ember nightmare.

The 18-year-old made just 3 appearances for the U18s last season in the pandemic-shortened campaign, serving as the backup to Jake Askew, who’s since been released. Wady looked to be on his way out as well, but ended up signing a one-year contract extension.

Wady moved to the UK in his early teens, joining Chelsea three seasons ago. He’s already had a half season loan at Tooting & Mitcham FC in 2019, making 9 appearances in all competitions for the seventh-tier club. Dartford play one division higher, in the National League South.

If you’ve never heard what a combination of a NorCal and London accent would sound like, here’s San Jose’s own Ethan Wady talking to the Dartford social media team about his expectations for the season ahead.

Wady’s taking the choice that several Chelsea youth goalkeepers before him have taken, most notably Nathan Baxter, and dropping multiple levels in the football pyramid to get the sort of goalkeeping challenge he would never get at one of the most dominant youth teams in the land, and learn by the non-league fires of propah footie.

The young USA U17 international’s long-term future may not be with Chelsea, but we wish him all the best of luck at The Darts.

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