Cameron Gregory offered first pro deal to join Shelis and Barnett
Shrewsbury Town can confirm that three players will graduate from the Academy into the first-team squad next season.
Yesterday was decision day for Town’s Under-18 Scholars and it has been decided that Goalkeeper Cameron Gregory will join Christos Shelis and Ryan Barnett in becoming professionals for the 2018/19 season.
Shelis and Barnett are already contracted for next season after Barnett signed a two-and-a-half year deal in February 2017, whilst Shelis signed a deal until 2019 back in October 2017.
They will be joined by Gregory who has been on the bench for the first-team a couple of times this season, whilst he has also been a standout performer for the youth team.
The decisions mean that six young players – Cameron Esien, Rory Huntbach, Josh Agbozo, Aaron Gilpin, Harri Lovett, Charley Higgs and Tyrone Ofori - will now leave the club.
Shrewsbury Town boss Paul Hurst spoke to ShrewsWeb about the decisions he took.
“In this group we’ve already signed up Christos Shelis and Barney (Ryan Barnett), so we’ve got two lads that already had deals and it’s not a case of just one player in that age group getting a pro deal, but Cam (Gregory) is the latest one”, said Paul.
“I think he’s come on a lot since coming up to the training ground and working with Danny. That’s nothing against the lads that he has been working with, but on 4G it’s more difficult for a goalkeeper, so he’s really benefitted with working with Danny and Dean Henderson, Craig (MacGillivray) and Shaun (Rowley).
“He has got a lot of good attributes. ‘Keepers are always a difficult one because not many ‘keepers even get close to a first-team in league football until they are much older, so it will be a long road for him, but we feel that he’s got the potential and some attributes to work with and develop. Hopefully, he will accept the offer and we look forward to working with him.”
Decision day is always a difficult one for those who don’t get offered deals, but Paul believes the current first-team squad shows that players can come back into the professional game.
“I’ve explained to them that it doesn’t have to be the end of the road if they want a career in football still”, Hurst said.
“There are lots of different exit routes now for players and, ultimately, what I said to them all is that they have to want to be footballers. Everyone makes a presumption that they want to be, but they might have had the experience and think that they actually want to do something else or they want to play part-time and get qualified in something else.”
Shrewsbury Town would like to thank all the lads for their hard work and dedication during their time with the club and we wish them all the best with whatever they choose to do in the future.