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Nolan and Westley hail academy star’s new deal

Exciting Academy star Ajibola Alese has agreed a new deal with the Hammers which will keep him with us initially until  the summer of 2023 plus a year’s option.

The 20 year old central defender  is currently on loan at Cambridge United but has always been sign as a highly promising prospect.

On completing the deal, the 20-year-old told West Ham TV: “I’ve been here since the age of seven, so to come through and sign a new contract is an amazing feeling.

“It’s a dream of mine to play for West Ham, so to be offered a new contract just shows that I’m going in the right direction.

“There are so many memories that I have here already. There are so many coaches who have given me little pieces of advice here and there that have helped me towards where I am today.

“I’d also like to thank my family, of course; God; and my friends, who have always supported me.

“West Ham means everything. It’s part of my family – I can’t describe it. West Ham is part of my blood now.”
Aji Alese signs his new contract

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After penning his first professional contract in July 2018, Alese won the Dylan Tombides Award the following season, subsequently spending last season on loan at Accrington Stanley, where he impressed over 15 appearances in all competitions.

On the international stage, Alese has also captained England’s U16s, helped the Young Lions reach the semi-finals of the 2018 UEFA European U17 Championship on home soil and – last season – made his bow at U20s level.

Earlier this season, Alese made a memorable West Ham United debut against Hull City in the Carabao Cup, helping his team to a 5-1 win at London Stadium with a solid display encompassing two completed tackles, two clearances and three interceptions.

First-Team Coach Kevin Nolan, who has worked closely with Alese on the defender’s development, added: “It’s fantastic that Aji has become the latest young player to commit his future to the Club. He is one of a talented group we hope will go on to break through and establish himself in the first team in the future.”

ClaretandHugh says: Make no mistake this is a great deal and from all we have been told this lad could become a real player for the club. He has the big advantage of being left sided and could play in  back three, back four or at left back. He was deeply impressive against Hull in the EFL Cup match earlier in the season and according to his former boss and CandH blogger Terry Westley, is a lad who is always determined to improve. He told us that the lad was regularly knocking on his door telling him he would do whatever it took to improve – go out on loan or whatever to reach his Hammers targets. Terry added that he has had fierce competition earlier with Declan and Reece Oxford coming through and that now another big prospect, Jamal Baptiste, is keeping the pressure on. But Terry said: “I’d back this lad for a good Hammers future, he is a determined young man.

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About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon