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Josh Grant and Karlo Žiger become newest Loan Army recruits

The winter additions to the loan brigade have begun.

Breaking a spell of recent loan re-assignments, Chelsea have added two players to their contingent away from the club. Academy pair, Josh Grant and Karlo Žiger have joined Yeovil Town (League Two) and Sutton United (National League) on loan deals until the end of the season.

Žiger and Grant have had vastly different pathways into the Chelsea academy. While Grant, currently aged 20, has been part of the set-up from the Under-8 level, 17-year-old Žiger was signed from NK Zagreb in the summer of 2017. However, one thing they do have in common is that they’re both FA Youth Cup winners, with Grant receiving a winner’s medal on 3 occasions and Ziger featuring in last season’s winning campaign.

One might say this loan has come a tad later than expected for Grant but he will now make the step up to League Two, linking up with former academy teammate Nathan Baxter at Yeovil. Grant is primarily a center-back, although he has played wing-back on occasion.

“Josh is powerful, athletic and has a good personality.

”This is a great opportunity for him to get regular first-team football and I’m pleased to have brought him in.”

- Darren Way; sorce: Yeovil Town FC

Meanwhile, Ziger’s move to the National League club reinforces the notion at the club that goalkeepers must be playing senior football at the earliest, even if not at the Football League level. Like Nathan Baxter and Jared Thompson before him, he’ll be looking to rack up the appearances before stepping up to a higher level in due time, starting with tomorrow’s FA Trophy match against Spennymoor Town.

Good luck to them both!

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