Henry's progress rewarded...THE SADDLERS have handed a professional contract to talented youth team left-back, Rico Henry.
The 17 year-old, who was given a taste of first-team action in the last pre-season, has made outstanding progress with some energetic and mature displays whilst coming through the Banks’s Stadium ranks.
“I am very pleased to be offering Rico a first professional deal,” said manager, Dean Smith. “It’s not often that we make this kind of offer to someone his age, but he has showed great potential and ability beyond his tender years.
“He deserves to move up and I hope that we can progress him in the right way. Hopefully he will remain grounded and put the hard work in. If he can do that, he will be an important player for this club in the years to come.”
Henry, who likes to get forward at every opportunity, is delighted to be joining the professional ranks.
“This is a good place to be and a good place to develop,” he said. “I am excited to have signed this deal and can’t wait to start pushing on.
“Neil Woods and Graham Biggs have been fantastic and they have had a big influence on me. Now I want to show them that I am ready for this challenge.
“It’s the next level for me; having played against Leeds United during the last pre-season, it has whetted my appetite and I want more.
“I know that the hard work is only just starting, but working alongside Dean Smith, Richard O’Kelly and experienced pros day in, day out can only benefit me.
“We’ve got a close-knit group here and I’ve been welcomed into it, which has been a big bonus.
“The target now is to play regularly for the Under-21s and reserve team and show that I am ready to make the step up.
“This is a proud moment for me and my family.”