AFC Bournemouth: Blandford boy Jake wins first professional contract

Bournemouth Echo: . .

CHERRIES' defensive prospect Jake McCarthy has been rewarded for his progress with a first professional contract.

McCarthy, who has come through the Dean Court youth ranks, is a second-year scholar who was elevated to the development squad in the summer.

The Blandford-based teenager, who was on loan to AFC Totton earlier this season, has impressed coach Stephen Purches and has penned a deal until June 2015.

Purches told the club website: “Jake had a great pre-season and impressed myself and the manager so this is a reward for the hard work he has put in.

“Getting your first professional contract is a massive thing for any footballer and this gives him the chance to push on over the next year and a half.

“Although he is a second-year scholar, we spoke about it at the start of the season and felt he could handle stepping up to the next level.

“He grabbed the opportunity with both hands and did well on loan with Totton, proving he could cope with men's football. He has done well and we hope that he is part of a development squad that will push on and progress.”

McCarthy will be hoping to help Cherries progress in the FA Youth Cup when they host Hereford United in the third round at Dean Court on Thursday (7pm). The winners will travel to either Manchester City or Doncaster Rovers.

Meanwhile, Cherries will visit Conference South outfit Gosport Borough in the quarter-final of the Hampshire Senior Cup.

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