England youth goalkeeper Joe Young has signed his first professional contract with Wolves.
The 17-year-old has spent almost ten years at Wolves Academy where he has progressed throughout the age groups to become the regular shot-stopper for the under-18s this season, while also making his under-23 debut during the current campaign.
Born in Telford, Young joined Wolves at eight-years-old and has since gone on to represent his country several times, playing between the sticks for England at under-16 and under-17 level, as well as earning a recent England under-18 call-up.
Head of Academy, Scott Sellars, said offering Young a professional contract is reward for all the effort and commitment he has given to the club during his fledgling career. “Joe has been here at Wolves for a very long time and joined us from the under-9s, so we know him really well and has progressed brilliantly during his time here.
“He was always highlighted as a player with potential and has spent most of this season as the under-18s goalkeeper after taking his opportunity when Jackson Smith got injured and has performed really well.
“In terms of his performances and attitude, Joe’s a boy with a really strong mentality and is a player who deserves to be progressing his way through the club, and signing this professional contract, because of his attitude, work ethic and what he displays on a daily basis.
“It goes to show that if young players do the work here, they will get rewarded.”
Sellars is now hoping Young, as well as his other first-year scholars, can continue to progress up the Academy ladder before blossoming into first-team regulars, either in gold and black or out on loan.
“I always talk about finding the right challenge for players, and if the right challenge is for him to play up an age category – because he’s good enough – then that’s the right challenge,” Sellars added.
“In the same way we have loaned a lot of our young players out this season because we felt that was the right challenge for them, we feel that some of our first-year scholars, such as Joe, are ready to be playing for the under-23s, so we have no fear as an Academy to progress them and challenge them.
“If they are playing in the under-23s at 17, we believe that by the time they get to 19 they will be ready to progress to first-team football – whether that’s with us, or out on loan. That’s always the plan for our young players.”