Exeter City have announced that they have agreed professional contracts with three of their second year Apprentices for next season.
Striker Tom Nichols, midfielder Jake Gosling and Roger Ingham, a versatile midfield player who can fill in at the back will now join up with Manager Paul Tisdale’s squad in July ahead of the 2011/12 campaign.
The trio were told the news on Monday night by Director of Football, Steve Perryman MBE and Tisdale.
“It was great day for Tom, Roger and Jake”, said Tisdale.
“And now we move forward to another set of young players who are all different but who all have a chance to bring their talents into the first team squad.”
“It’s an extended opportunity and the three we are signing will be urged to take that.”
While Tisdale was happy for Nichols, Gosling and Ingham he admitted that it had been tough to tell others that they had not been offered a contract for next year.
“Although we offered contracts to three players for next year, we told others that they’ve not been offered so it’s a real mixed bag of emotions. It was one of those difficult days as a Manager on Monday when you have to speak to the players finishing their scholarships and their parents,” he added.
And Head Of Youth Simon Hayward paid tribute released players Ethan Phillips, Paul Gibbins and Josh Searle who will all depart the club after joining it as U11s.
“We need to pass on a massive thank you for the efforts that they’ve put into the club having signed their first contracts here at Under 11s,” said Hayward.
“That’s eight years of service so the boys and their parents have shown a massive amount of commitment and they’ve been fantastic.”
“They are all very good football players who still have a chance to achieve in professional football but their route just might be a bit different and we’ve had stories like that in our own club with Danny Clay and Elliott Frear.”
“We will continue to keep an eye on those three, they are good lads and we will help them in any way we can and either with us or someone else they will make their way in professional football.”