Sunderland AFC this summer welcomed its new scholar intake, who will join the club’s second-year scholars to make up the Under-18 squad in 2022-23, competing in the U18 Premier League.
Here is an introduction to the players who have made the step up – and several of whom are expected to test themselves in the Under-21s’ Premier League 2 opener against Norwich City on Friday with many of the U21 side on tour in Canada.
Kailem Beattie – left-back
Kailem first joined SAFC at Under-11 level, and is described as a tall, athletic full-back who shows an eagerness to join the attack.
Luke Bell – centre-back
Luke is a tough, dominant centre-half, who shows old-school number five qualities but is also very comfortable with the ball at his feet.
Daniel Cameron – goalkeeper
Another player who has risen through the ranks at the Academy of Light, 6’4’’ stopper Daniel joined SAFC as an Under-10.
Ben Creamer – winger
Ben is a right-footed, agile wide man who can show a remarkable turn of pace. He is currently in rehabilitation for a knee injury.
Jenson Jones – full-back
Jenson joined the club at the age of just six, and has already played up in the U18 side as an Under-16 on several occasions last season. He is equally comfortable at right and left-back.
Thomas Lavery – centre-back
Another dominant and physical defender, Thomas can operate across the whole back line and has plenty of full-back experience.
Cuba Mitchell – midfielder
Cuba arrived on Wearside from Birmingham City and possesses excellent technical quality, and shows great ability in the middle of the park, both on and off the ball.
Daniel Obolo – winger
Originating from London’s Onside Academy, Daniel signed his scholarship after impressing on trial. He is a tricky, left-footed wide player who likes to get at his man.
Josh Robertson – attacking midfielder
Eligible for Cyprus, Josh has been recognised by the country’s national team. He is comfortable driving on with the ball, and is a technically gifted number 10.
Jayden Sekete – full-back
Described as an athletic defensive player who shows the versatility to cover the whole back line, Jayden arrived at the club initially as an Under-13.
Jake Waters – striker
Standing at 6’3’’, striker Jake gives defenders plenty to think about. Arriving at U16 level, he has tallied numerous games for the U18s already and netted against Leeds United last season.
Thomas Watson – winger
Able to operate as both a winger and centre-forward, Thomas has blossomed through since the Under-9 age group and has already featured for both the U18s and U23s.
Welcome to the Under-18s, Lads, and we wish you every success in a Sunderland shirt this season!