English Premier League side Southampton have confirmed that 17-year-old South African midfielder Kgagelo Chauke has signed a professional contract with the club.
The young South African-born midfielder moved to the UK at a young age and has progressed through the academy at Saints.
Chauke’s contract will run until 2022 as he will be looking to make his way into the first team at the club.
The club announced the news in a statement on their website:
‘Celebrating his 17th birthday earlier this month, the highly rated teenager has now signed a deal that runs until June 2022.
‘Having progressed through the academy ranks following his 2017 switch from Thatcham Town, Chauke has impressed both at Under-18 and Under-23 levels this term, including an appearance against Coventry City in the EFL Trophy.’
‘I’m really proud because I’ve been working for this moment. Pleased to see the work paying off,’ said the midfielder when speaking about his time on the south coast and future aims.
‘It’s special because growing up I’ve had a lot of help from my family. Being able to share this with them is a proud moment. In the back of my mind I knew that if I put the right work in that this moment was achievable.
RISING STAR #SaintsFC is pleased to announce that young midfielder Kgaogelo Chauke has signed his first professional contract:
— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) January 27, 2020
‘My main attribute is hard work, because without that then this process wouldn’t be possible.
‘Being at this club, everything is put towards development on the pitch. Even in education, everything has come together on the pitch to help me perform.’
Academy Director Matt Hale said: ‘Kegs has shown tremendous progress since joining us part way through his U15 season.
‘He has learned so much and showed a real curiosity to develop. He has strong listening skills, an acceptance to take in information and applies his learning really well in games.
‘The coaches enjoy working with him and I’m looking forward to watching him develop further over the new few years.’
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