Under-21 team midfielder Billy Clifford has today (Friday) joined Colchester United on a one-month loan deal.

The 20-year-old leaves Stamford Bridge for the first time in his career, which has so far seen him appearing in more than 50 second string fixtures, helping us to the 2011 reserve league title as well as the 2010 FA Youth Cup. He has been an ever-present in our Under-21 fixtures this campaign, figuring in last night's 2-0 win over Fulham at Cobham.

Clifford signed a four-year contract at the beginning of last season, which will keep him on Chelsea's books until 2015, and represented the first team on our 2011 summer tour of Asia.

Colchester entertain Scunthorpe United at home on Saturday afternoon, and if selected Clifford will be hoping to help the Essex side improve on their current position, just one point and one place above the League One relegation zone.