Hope Akpan has become the latest Everton starlet to sign professional terms.
Midfielder Akpan, 17, penned his deal at Goodison Park on Wednesday, following in the footsteps of James McCarten, Nathan Craig and Lewis Codling, who have all signed on in the past month.
A regular with Neil Dewsnip's Under-18s, the Childwall-born midfielder has also broken into Andy Holden's reserve set-up this season.
"I'm delighted to have signed the deal," Akpan told evertonTV. "I found out about a month ago when [Academy manager] Ray Hall had a quiet word with me. I was in shock and couldn't believe it but I'm made up."
The highlight of Akpan's season so far came in last month's 3-2 mini-derby triumph over Liverpool.
A substitute, the teenager produced an impressive cameo and admits he relished the opportunity.
"The derby was amazing," he said. "Coming on against Liverpool and winning after being 2-0 down was really, really good. It was the first real crowd I've played in front of and it was a great experience.
"I just want to keep playing for the Under-18s now and hopefully get into the reserves more regularly."