Six of Chelsea’s FA Youth Cup winning team have this week put pen to paper on their first professional contracts.
John Swift, Lewis Baker and Nathan Aké have signed up until 2015 on three-year deals, whilst Anjur Osmanovic, Alex Davey and Adam Nditi have been offered two years.
The group have been rewarded for productive first seasons as scholars and for their excellent development as footballers. Aké and Osmanovic will have had the deals written into their agreements to join the academy from overseason, but in Aké’s case in particular it is thoroughly deserved after shining in the second half of 2011-12.
Swift and Baker were in eye-catching form throughout the season and played major roles in the Youth Cup triumph, whilst making the step up to Reserve team football and to the England Under-17 ranks.
Davey and Nditi joined them in Dermot Drummy’s group and both had very strong spells at times, with Davey coming into the Youth Cup team at the Semi Final stage and making the centre-back spot his own with outstanding displays.
Nditi, meanwhile, has already accumulated over 50 youth team appearances having featured extensively as an Under-16 and will look to press on into the Under-21 setup full time.
Meanwhile, midfielder James Ashton, a long-term injury victim, has extended his stay with the club by one more season.
Congratulations to everyone involved.