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Graduating in style

1 Jun 2018
Southampton celebrate winning the PL2 Division 2 playoff final

Southampton's stars of the future shone as Premier League 2 youngsters became fixtures of the senior side in 2018/19.

Southampton has a proud history of developing talent from within the club's ranks and the 2018/19 season was no different.

Homegrown products Callum Slattery, Kayne Ramsay and Tyreke Johnson were key figures in the Saints side which won promotion to the first division of Premier League 2.

They were also awarded their senior debuts during the campaign, while youngsters Yan Valery and Angus Gunn became first-team regulars in the second half of the season.

Valery impressed at Academy level before making his Premier League bow in the 2-2 home draw with Manchester United and ended up with 23 Premier League appearances to his name.

"I signed here because I knew it was one of the best Academies in the country," said the 20-year-old. "They trust young players, they have great staff and facilities, a good training ground and they try and make you the best you can be if you work hard.


"This club is like a family and I think that is good for young players. I am really happy - there are five or six of us and hopefully there will be more coming through next season."

Gunn kept a clean sheet on his first Premier League outing, a goalless draw against Chelsea, and featured 12 times before the end of the season.

The goalkeeper was a youth product at Manchester City, where he gained valuable experience in Premier League 2, before a season-long loan with Norwich City was followed by a permanent move to the south coast last summer.

"Academies have to take credit for the development of players across the country," he said. "They seem to be getting better every year and Southampton are renowned for that."

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