The Iron are delighted to announce that they have offered second-year scholars Jack Dyche and Noel Burdett their first professional contracts.
Dyche has made 20 appearances for the youth team this season, scoring 13 goals, while Burdett has made 15 appearances, netting five times. Both have also made a number of appearances for the development side this season.
“We’ve been lucky that the current second years have been a really good group,” academy manager Tony Daws said.
“For Noel and Jack, they’ve just got that little bit extra that has given them the opportunity to get a professional contract. Hopefully they can keep their heads down, keep working hard and progressing.
“The academy is judged on how many players come through the system and we have to thank the first team manager and the football club for allowing this to happen. From our point of view, we would deem it a successful season for that reason.”
Leeds-born Dyche arrived at the club midway through his under-16s campaign two years ago after being released from his hometown club. After a trial and a battle with other clubs in the area, Dyche became a Scunthorpe United scholar and has since never looked back in his progression.
Meanwhile former South Axholme student Burdett has progressed through the whole cycle, joining the club at under-nine level and progressing through to being offered a professional deal – a similar pathway that has seen Kyle Wootton emerge into United’s first team ranks.
First team manager Nick Daws said: “These are two fantastic stories. We have two ends of the spectrum, with Noel a local boy coming through the entire system, which is a perfect scenario. The alternative side to it is Jack who lost his opportunity at his club, but we’ve benefitted from him taking his chance here.
“They have both played in the development side and done well and have both been in and around the first team squad at different times. Kyle (Wootton) is a great example for them as he’s level-headed, determined, talented, and he’s waited and bided his time.
“Both Jack and Noel possess slightly different qualities, but both possess physical qualities which is important, as well as being technically good, tactically aware and they will fit into the way that we play. If we get opportunities to include them in the squad between now and the end of the season, it will be because they deserve it.
“The reverse is looking at the boys who we have released. The six players leaving us all have realistic plans in place to either continue in education, to look at an apprenticeship or to look at a level that is suited to them. We wish them all the best as well. As difficult as these decisions are, they are done with the best interests of the player and the club at heart.”
The club would like to place on record their thanks for the hard work of Ben Ledger, Charlie Cleminshaw, Riley Baker, De’Andre Watkis, Matt Stockill and Sonny Shilling while at the club and wish them all the best for the future.
Tony Daws added: “As a football club, we will be supporting the second year scholars who are not being offered a contract and some have a career pathway which now takes them onto university, which is fantastic.
“I’d also like to thank all the academy staff and the tutors at John Leggott College who have once again assisted our scholars in achieving 100% pass rate in their academic studies which places Scunthorpe United in the top 10% of all Football League Clubs for Academic success in the last 5 years. We also reserve an extra thanks to our partners, the St Lawrence Academy, for the continued use of their superb facilities.
“As we look towards a bright new future for the Academy in our new home at the new stadium we can build on solid foundations.”
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