Southend United have lost star man Dru Yearwood ahead of next weekend's game against Blackpool.
The highly-rated 19-year-old has completed a move to Championship side Brentford in a deal believed to be worth £500,000.
Yearwood departs Roots Hall after eight years with the club, having first joined the academy at the age of 11.
“I will never have a bad word to say about the club because it’s been brilliant for me,” Yearwood told the Southend Echo.
“It’s where I went from being a boy to man and where I got to play first-team football.
“I have so many people to thank and too many to mention really but I hope they know who they all are.
“So many past and present coaches have helped me and so have so many past and present players too.
"I'll always be thankful for that.
“It all happened really quickly but I’m happy to be here and it’s the next step up for me now.
“I’m looking forward to the challenge of playing in the Championship.”
Yearwood made 61 appearances during his time at Southend, but one game in particularly stands out.
“I had a number of high points from my time at Southend but I think the main one would be staying up on the last game,” he added.
“We got the win we needed and all the celebrations at the end were great.”