Addicks Apprentices Offered Professional Deals

By: Elaine Brand |
18/01/12 |
Adebayo Azeez, Joe Pigott, Semi Ajay & Tobi Sho-Silva

Top: Adebayo Azeez & Joe Pigott. Bottom: Semi Ajay & Tobi Sho-Silva

Charlton Athletic yesterday offered four Apprentices professional deals ahead of their FA Youth Cup Clash with Leicester City tonight.

Current 2nd year players Adebayo Azeez, Joe Pigott and Semi Ajayi are all expected to sign deals with the Club, as is 1st year Tobi Sho-Silva.

Azeez, Piggott and Sho-Silva are all forwards while Ajayi is a defender. They will join fellow Apprentice players Callum Harriott, Harry Osborne and Jordan Cousins in committing to the Addicks meaning that the side that faces Leicester City this evening could include seven fully fledged professionals.

“We are extremely pleased to offer these promising young players a professional deal,” Manager Chris Powell told the Club’s website.

“We feel they have plenty of potential for the future, and they have made excellent progress under the guidance of Academy Director Paul Hart and Manager Steve Avory this season.”

“It’s fitting that we announce this exciting news in a big week for the Academy, with the youth cup match against Leicester on Wednesday night and then the second Academy day on Saturday.”

“Those fans who have watched the youth cup run, not to mention the league games, to date, will have seen what an exciting crop of players we have coming through the ranks.”

“I’ve been fortunate enough to see many young players come through in my spells with the Club, and it’s always a proud moment to see them join the professional ranks.”

“They have worked extremely hard to get to this position, but that work will intensify once they join up with the senior squad. My staff and I look forward to working with them on a full-time basis and further developing their talents.”

Attackers Sho-Silva, Azeez and Pigott have netted 29 goals between them so far this season, with powerful frontman Azeez currently leading the scoring charts with 13, including two hat-tricks in his 20 league and cup games.

Academy Director Paul Hart added: “All four players have done exceptionally well. They have worked hard and have proved to be players who may have a chance going forward.”

“This is only a foot on the ladder for them, but these contracts are due reward for their efforts.”