Southampton this afternoon confirmed that academy graduate Calum Chambers has signed a four-year deal with the Premier League club.
Chambers, 18, agreed to sign the four-year deal at the club's Staplewood base following an impressive pre-season.
The young full-back, who has represented England at Under-19 level, was named in manager Mauricio Pochettino's squad for the trip to Catalunya and Austria. During that period, he started every pre-season game for the club, including ties against Besiktas and Schalke 04.
Chambers now looks set to enter direct competition with Nathaniel Clyne, who joined Southampton from Crystal Palace last summer. Clyne is currently sidelined through injury, presenting Chambers with the opportunity to lay claim to the vacant berth.
The club has been light in the right-back department since the release of defensive duo Danny Butterfield and Frazer Richardson, but it is hoped that Chambers will make the step up to Premier League football.
Speaking to the club's official website, Chambers commented: "I've been at the Club since I was so young, so this is a great feeling. I've been here since I was seven and I've been treated really well so it means the world.
"The Club has a great set-up and it's going through a really good time at the moment. There are going to be big things from Southampton in the future."
The club's manager, Mauricio Pochettino, also outlined his hopes for Calum ahead of the new campaign: "Calum has shown in his performances in pre-season that he is more than capable of performing at this level, and we hope that this commitment allows him to push on and thrive within the First Team environment."
Chambers is the latest academy graduate to be promoted to the senior squad and earn a professional contract. He follows in the footsteps of Jack Stephens, Luke Shaw, James Ward-Prowse and Lloyd Isgrove.
Speaking on the club's well-renowned youth policy, Pochettino explained: "From the beginning of my time at Southampton, Nicola [Cortese, Executive Chairman] spoke to me of his project of bringing young talented players through the Academy and into the First Team, and that was something that really appealed to me."
Write for GiveMeSport! Sign-up to the GMS Writing Academy here: https://gms.to/12evFlH
DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms