Loan Potential

In the past few weeks, Yeovil boss Terry Skiverton has taken to Twitter to ask his followers for ‘scouting’ advice on new signings.

Upon recommendations from a number of his followers, the Glovers’ boss secured the signature of striker Kieran Agard, formerly of Everton.

In keeping with that sort of thinking, TheChels presents five young Chelsea players who are likely to head out on loan during the 2011-12 season and who can make a real impact for a Football League club. Take it in the spirit it’s meant.

Adam Phillip
Having put together a relatively injury-free spell for the first time in almost three years, the 20 year-old striker will be looking to kick on from a successful 2010-11 campaign next season.

A short-term loan at Huish Park under Skiverton last season was ill-fated as the League One strugglers rarely found the freedom to gamble on a relatively unproven striker with each point precious, but Phillip returned to Chelsea to find excellent form for the rest of the campaign.

At his dazzling best cutting in from the left wing onto his right foot, he can also lead the line as a centre forward and possesses excellent pace, strength and skill. He certainly knows where the back of the net is, having scored eleven goals in 24 total reserve outings.

Any League One side looking to challenge for promotion this season could do a lot worse than take a look at Adam.

Billy Clifford
Billy’s 2010-11 season saw him spend time with the first team, reserves and under-18s before a knee injury prematurely ended his campaign. Up until that point he had been in spectacular form in two positions.

At his creative, dynamic best in an attacking central midfield role, he can also offer his services at right-back, where his natural athleticism and work rate are the hallmarks of the modern day full-back.

As he doesn’t turn 19 until November it’s unlikely he’ll go on loan before the turn of the year, with Chelsea very rarely opting to send their players out younger than that age, but it will also give him time to develop further physically in order to compete in the men’s game.

Conor Clifford
A player with half a season of professional experience under his belt, Conor will be much sought after by many a club this summer. Excellent for Plymouth Argyle last winter in his first taste of the men’s game, he was forced to leave Home Park due to a transfer embargo and moved on to Notts County.

Due to managerial incompetence under Paul Ince, the Irishman was less successful in the midlands but having already proven his quality in England’s third tier; he could quite easily find a regular starting place in League One next season. An ambitious Championship side willing to take a risk could be very well rewarded too.

A true box to box midfielder with leadership, stamina and effort in spaces, Clifford relishes the battle for control of a game and often weighs in with spectacular long-range goals.

Milan Lalkovic
Another who turns 19 midway through next season, Slovakian forward Lalkovic has already been linked with a new home for 2011-12.

New Swindon Town manager Paolo Di Canio is reportedly interested in the Under-21 international, and if Milan does end up moving down to the County Ground, he could be one of the stars of the season.

Capable of playing wide or through the middle, he was at his best in 10-11 ploughing an endless furrow in the channels, allowing his reserve winger teammates room and space inside to dominate.

Blessed with remarkable accelerate and skill and an eye for goal, he may frustrate with inconsistency but his plusses far outweigh his minuses and an argument can certainly be made for his capability at a much higher level than Swindon.

Carl Magnay
A slightly different situation exists with Carl. The centre-back missed a full year sidelined with a serious knee problem and is only contracted until the end of December 2011.

Therefore, he will be seeking a move with a view to a permanent contract. If he can maintain his fitness, he’ll stand a fine chance of a League One move at worst.

Previous forays into the football league at Northampton and Milton Keynes were both interrupted by ailments and now, at the age of 22, he would require registering if he was to be involved in Chelsea’s Premier League Matchday squad.

Very much a player in the mould of John Terry, the Northern Ireland Under-21 international shone in half a dozen appearances last season, showing no ill effects of injury and a host of new additions to his game, particularly in his distribution of the ball.

A wise head on young shoulders, he reads an excellent game and is a nice blend of old school and modern day central defender. He deserves a good move and should get one.

Whilst it’s no certainty that this particular quintet will all depart Stamford Bridge on a temporary basis this season, it’s at least likely.

They won’t be alone either, as Jacob Mellis, Ben Gordon, Rhys Taylor and Sam Walker are sure to build on movs last season with more regular action, whilst Aziz Deen-Conteh, Kaby, Marko Mitrovic and perhaps even Rohan Ince may delve into the pro game for the first time at some point over the course of the season.