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Chelsea Academy striker sent to Barnsley on first loan spell

Manchester City v Chelsea - FA Youth Cup Final: First Leg Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Chelsea Academy’s 18-year-old striker Ike Ugbo has become the 14th 2017-18 Loan Army member after joining Championship side Barnsley on loan for the season.

Like Dominic Solanke and Tammy Abraham before him, Ugbo has been prolific at the youth level and has helped propel Chelsea’s various academy sides to no less than five trophies. Last season, he scored 25 goals in 40 appearances in all competitions and was also a part of the England side that won the Toulon Tournament this summer.

Last season, Barnsley finished 14th in the Championship and often lined up featuring Newcastle United prospect Adam Armstrong up front, although Armstrong had previously proved himself in lower leagues.

Barnsley’s 39-year-old manager, Paul Heckingbottom expressed his enthusiasm regarding the Ugbo’s arrival at the club.

“We’re really pleased at being able to bring one of the brightest young strikers out there to Oakwell and of course we must thank Chelsea for allowing us to do so. I am really excited about what Ike can bring to the team. He is a forward who has pace, height, strength and power as well as a keen eye for goal as is shown by his record. He fits into the mould of players that we’re looking for; someone who wants to better themselves and further their career so we are more than happy that he has chosen to continue that development with us.”

- Paul Heckingbottom; source: Barnsley FC

This move does indeed have the looks of that of Tammy Abraham’s to Bristol City last summer, and hopefully it’ll go just as well. Good luck, Ike!

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