HARRISON Chamberlain is aiming to hit the ground running in pre-season after signing his first Colchester United professional contract.

The 18-year-old goalkeeper impressed for the U's under-21s last season and has earned a deal with the club, ahead of the 2024-25 campaign.

He told cu-fc.com: "I've had a few of the first team lads telling me that the hard work starts here so I can't wait to get started.

"I've had a bit of a break, but I'm on some gym work now so I'm ready for pre-season to hit the ground running."


Chamberlain has spent the past 18 months with Colchester's under-18 squad but has also played regularly for the under-21s.

At the end of 2023, Chamberlain was recognised by the League Football Education (LFE) for impressive performances on the pitch and in the classroom. 

The LFE recognises eleven U18s footballers for their outstanding efforts on and off the pitch in what they call 'The 11'.

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Outlining their reasons for including Harrison in ‘The 11’, the LSE said: “Despite having only joined the LFE Apprenticeship Programme in the autumn of last year, Harrison Chamberlain has made rapid progress both on and off the pitch.

“Harrison missed the first couple of months of his first year but that hasn’t deterred his development at all, swiftly catching up on his classroom work, whilst making a real impression on the grass.

“The young shot stopper has trained with the first team and has also made appearances for the U21s. Harrison has also been working on attaining a goalkeeping coaching qualification after attending a course ran by former LFE apprentice, Yilmaz Aksoy.

“On top of that, the 17-year-old has gained outstanding grades in his BTEC Diploma so far and is also progressing well with his extra-curricular Psychology A Level.

“He is said to have ‘impressed all staff with his maturity, attitude and determination, plus his ability to cope with major changes in his life going from sixth form in Kent, to digs in Colchester’.”

Chamberlain joins Max Jolliffe and Kien Connolly in signing contracts with the U's, ahead of next season.

Colchester released a host of young players from their under-21 squad at the end of the 2023-24 campaign.