BLYTHE Bridge born Oliver Shenton revealed his delight after signing scholarship forms at the Britannia Stadium on Friday afternoon.
The 16-year-old has been with the Academy since the age of six and put pen-to-paper on a two-year deal following an introduction ceremony in the Sir Stanley Matthews Lounge.
After the signing process, Stoke City Player
spoke to the youngster who said it was a dream come true to sign for his boyhood club on a full time basis and become one of 11 new scholars.
“I’m very happy,” beamed Shenton, “I’ve supported this Club for a long time now and played here since I was six so I’m delighted to have signed my scholarship at Stoke City.
“As soon as I was offered the contract I just wanted to signed it and join my club, Stoke City.
“Now that I’ve signed on as a scholar who knows what can happen and how far I can progress at the Club.
“I just want to keep succeeding and be consistent in my game with the Under-18s.
“Hopefully I can continue to progress and get a good pre-season behind me to set me off for a good year ahead.”
The box-to-box midfielder has already enjoyed considerable success after being part of the squad which claimed the Generation Adidas Cup last season, as well as playing and scoring in a behind-closed-doors Under-21 friendly against Barnsley during Glyn Hodges’ first campaign in charge.
Shenton now hopes to continue progressing through the age groups and follow in the footsteps of Charlie Ward and Daniel Bachmann who both made the move up to the first team squad last season.
“I’ve already got a bit of experience with the Under-18s from last year and know how difficult it is so hopefully we can succeed a little bit more next season,” he revealed.
“If you are good enough and work hard like Charlie and Daniel did last season then you will be rewarded as everyone saw when they both made the bench so I know I must keep working hard.
“The main aim is to play for the first team just like every other boy strives for.
“It would be a boyhood dream fulfilled to play for Stoke City and who knows what will happen in the future."