Barnsley sign Chelsea striker Ike Ugbo on season-long loan

Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom has made his eighth signing of the summer today as striker Ike Ugbo joined the club from Premier League side Chelsea on loan until the end of the 2017/18 season.

It is the first time that Ugbo has been loaned out from Stamford Bridge, as Antonio Conte wants the striker to gain more first-team experience which he is unlikely to get if he stayed with the Blues. 

A player with a lot of potential

Ugbo arrives at Oakwell as a young player who will be hungry for success in his first season of competitive football. The Championship is the perfect league for him to improve his game and build up his physicality. Just because he is on loan, does not mean that he does not have the credentials to be an astute addition ahead of next season. For example, Tammy Abraham made a similar loan switch from Chelsea to Bristol City last season and netted 23 times. 

He has spent his whole career at Stamford Bridge, but is yet to make an appearance for the first team. However, he has been very successful for their youth teams. He has scored over 60 goals during his three-year spell at the club including 23 in 35 matches last season for both both the Under 18 and Under 23 sides. 

Ugbo is yet to make a first-team appearance for Chelsea. (picture: Getty Images / Darren Walsh)
Ugbo is yet to make a first-team appearance for Chelsea. (picture: Getty Images / Darren Walsh)

The 18-year-old has also represented England on the international stage and has most recently played for the Under 20 side which came out as champions from the Toulon Tournament earlier this summer. He played three times and scored once during this successful campaign. 

Heckingbottom 'excited' about new signing

Barnsley boss Heckingbottom has been left excited about what Ugbo can offer his team next season. He has been looking to add some firepower to his front-line throughout this window and has now finally been able to do so. 

He believes that Ugbo has all the attributes to be a success at Oakwell next season. He told Barnsley's official site: “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."

Before adding: "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 also added: "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.”