Four youngsters sign professional deals

By SFC Media time Wed 17 Jul Saints Academy
Photo by James Bridle | Alex Jankewitz

Southampton Football Club is pleased to announce that a number of its young players have signed their first professional contracts.

Academy prospects Alex Jankewitz, Christian Norton, Seamus Keogh and Caleb Watts have all put pen to paper ahead of the 2019/20 season.

Jankewitz and Watts have completed three-year deals, which run until June 2022, while Norton and Keogh have signed one and two-year deals respectively.

Swiss youth international Jankewitz – a versatile midfielder – joined Saints from Geneva based club Servette in 2018 as a first-year scholar, and having turned 17 on Christmas Day, has now agreed professional terms at St Mary’s.

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JULY 01: Celeb Watts  signs his pro contract extension with Southampton FC on July 01, 2018 pictured at St Marys Stadium, Southampton, England. (Photo by James Bridle - Southampton FC/Southampton FC via Getty Images)
Under-18s midfielder Caleb Watts signs a three-year deal

Full-back Keogh and midfielder Watts were also new additions to the Academy last season, joining from Slingo Rovers and QPR, while striker Norton has been with the club since 2015.

“I'm delighted to sign officially for Southampton,” Jankewitz commented. “It's been a great experience so far, everyone at the club has helped and supported me. 

“Life in England is good. I want to play well and be confident enough to be patient. I hope my time will come.”

Norton, who scored 15 times for Southampton's Under-18s last term, said: “I'm really happy and ready to kick on. It's a massive aspiration to play at St Mary's with a full crowd. Playing at the stadium last season gave me a little taster of what it could be like.

the manager has already given young players plenty of opportunity. it gives us incentive.

christian norton

“The manager has already given young players plenty of opportunity. It gives us incentive because the pathway is clear."

Irish youth international Keogh added: "It's a feeling that I've dreamt of. For any young footballer, the main aim is to get a shot at playing first-team football.

"There's plenty of young Irish players already at the club and they made it so easy for me to settle here. I want to continue enjoying my football and see where it takes me."

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JULY 01: Christian Norton signs his pro contract extension with Southampton FC on July 01, 2018 pictured at St Marys Stadium, Southampton, England. (Photo by James Bridle - Southampton FC/Southampton FC via Getty Images)
Striker Christian Norton secures a one-year deal

Watts, who has already had a brief taste of Under-23s football, said: "I'm ecstatic. It's something I've worked for since a kid. I'm especially pleased to have signed for such a great club with such a great track record.

"The staff here really care about your development and it's something that initially attracted me to the club."

Academy Director Matt Hale said: “All four lads have signed at the club over the last few years and are relatively new to our programme.

“Each player is representative of the club’s extensive work in Talent ID, both domestically and in Europe, and we believe we have identified real talent in these four. Their potential is really exciting.”

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