In Profile: Ronnie Edwards


Over 100 EFL appearances with international and domestic silverware to his name, Ronnie Edwards has plenty of experience for just 21-years-old.

The highly-rated young defender is firmly on an upward trajectory in his career, and arrives on the South Coast to fulfil a “dream” Premier League move just five years after his senior debut.

Essex-born Edwards began his career at North London non-league side Barnet, where he rose through the ranks from the age of nine.

His steady progression in humble surroundings at the Bees allowed him to develop, and thrive, away from the relative limelight of a Premier League academy; at just 16, he was already captain for the Under-18s.

There was faith in Edwards’s abilities, which saw him fast tracked into senior football in the space of a week during December 2019.

In the Middlesex Senior Cup - a county competition - a 16-year-old Edwards made his first senior start and then, just four days later, his professional debut arrived as a late substitute against Maidenhead United in the Vanarama National League.

Edwards (L) broke through at Barnet.

Eyes were on the centre-back as he concluded the 2019/20 season with five appearances for Barnet, including a late cameo in the National League play-offs.

The handful of games were all he needed to earn a trial at Peterborough United in the summer of 2020, and it didn’t take long for the then-17-year-old to take the next step in his career.

"I had made my mind up, he was excellent, he did everything I asked of him." were the words of Posh boss Darren Ferguson, who signed Edwards after one trial game.

If each stage of his fledgling career journey may have felt like a sizeable one, Edwards was certainly unfazed when he stepped on the field in new surroundings.

In September 2020, he made his Peterborough debut in the EFL Trophy and his full League One debut the following December against MK Dons, still at 17-years-old.

He played six times as Posh were promoted to the Championship, where an even more impressive breakout year was waiting.

Despite his side’s misfortunes, suffering an instant relegation from the second tier, Edwards was a shining light as he established himself as a first team regular at just 18-years-old.

He played 38 games in the heart of the defence, 34 of those in the Championship, only two years after making his first forays in the non-league game.

The talented youngster won Peterborough's Player of the Season award and picked up Player of the Season and Young Player of the Season gongs from the the club's supporters association.

He earned his first international call-ups as well, with an England Under-19s debut in October 2021.

In June 2022, he then played all-but-one game as the Young Lions won the UEFA U19 European Championships, with Edwards playing the duration of a tense final that went to extra-time against Israel.

Edwards lifting the Under-19 EUROs trophy.

Returning to London Road with an international trophy, Edwards went from strength to strength in the Peterborough side with a further 44 appearances in League One.

He was a key part of the sixth-placed finish, but suffered play-off heartbreak in a dramatic two-legged tie against Sheffield Wednesday that saw the Owls claw back an improbable aggregate score and win on penalties.

Edwards had done his part for his own career though, still only just entering his twenties.

With rumours beginning to swirl of Premier League and Championship interest, the defender stuck in for one more season guiding Peterborough back to the play-offs.

There was more disappointment against eventual-promotion winners Oxford United, but the centre-back played another astonishing 55 games with his 100th league start recorded in January 2024.

He did pick up another piece of silverware though, lifting the Bristol Street Motors trophy at Wembley Stadium in a dramatic final against Wycombe Wanderers.

Edwards (R) is also a recent Wembley winner.

A relentless five years of milestones and surpassed expectations have finally led him to a Premier League call, with Saints landing his signature ahead of the 2024/25 campaign.

Now, both club and player are set to face their latest big steps in unison.

For Edwards, it’s a jump to the top flight of English football for the first time in his career, whilst Saints prepare for their return with a new-look style and structure under Russell Martin.

For both parties, hopefully it’s just the start of the next impressive chapter.

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