Academy midfielder named in 'The 11'
Pompey Academy midfielder Ben Close has been selected as one of the top apprentices in the country.
He has been in named in ‘The 11’ by League Football Education (LFE), who take into account the football and academic progress of young players.
The competition replaces the Apprentice of the Month competition are will run in October, December, February and May.
The inaugural 11 are:
Jake Charles (Huddersfield)
Ben Close (Pompey)
Ioan Evans (Sheffield United)
Robert Evans (Wrexham)
Tyler Guy (Notts County)
James Jones (Colchester)
Conor Mahoney (Accrington)
Bryn Morris (Middlesbrough)
Fejiri Okenabirhie (Stevenage)
Sam Szmodics (Colchester)
Harry Williams (Cheltenham)
Close has made an impressive start to the season, netting four goals in nine games for Paul Hardyman’s under-18 side:
LFE’s Ian Smithson said: “He’s been outstanding. He’s been in at the academy working with the younger players to get his coaching hours and is well on track educationally.
LFE chief executive Alan Sykes said: “This competition is aligned directly to apprentice reviews that are conducted by our regional officers throughout the season and is a great way to highlight the achievements and progress of talented young footballers.”