Mellis in action on his senior debut against MSK Zilina. Nigel French/EMPICS Sport
No smoke without...

Smoke grenade prankster Jacob Mellis released by Chelsea

Midfielder’s agent says that he has left Chelsea “by mutual consent” after admitting to setting off a smoke grenade at the club’s training facility.

A CHELSEA RESERVE who set off a smoke grenade at the club’s Cobham training facility earlier this month has been released from his contract “by mutual consent.”

An internal investigation found that midfielder Jacob Mellis, 21, was responsible for the prank which led to a full evacuation of the training ground.

Another reserve player, 19-year-old Billy Clifford, was fined for his part in the incident. Press Association reports that Clifford admitted to bringing the grenade back to Cobham, while Mellis admitted to setting it off.

Mellis joined Chelsea’s youth ranks from Sheffield United in 2007, and was a regular part of the club’s youth sides and reserves. He made his senior debut against MSK Zilina in the Champions League in November 2010, in between loan stints with Southampton and Barnsley. He has represented England at U16, U17 and U19 level.

Mellis’s agent, Icon Sports Management, said this evening that the player had not been sacked but had left by mutual consent.

The smoke grenade incident was not the first controversy to happen at Chelsea’s training ground in recent times. Last February, Ashley Cole had to apologise after he accidentally shot and injured a work experience student with an air rifle.

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