After a successful trial period at the club, 17-year-old midfielder Courtney Clarke has signed for Derby County.

Following previous reports that the youngster had featured and scored for the Rams’ U18s set up, it now appears as though a permanent deal has been secured for the Whyteleafe FC starlet.

Kinetic Academy, the football academy which Clarke was a part of, uploaded a post to Instagram on Monday night, stating that they were ‘delighted’ as they revealed that Derby had snapped up their student.

The teenager, previously tracked by Manchester City and West Ham, then confirmed the switch as he shared the post to his story, also updating his profile picture to a shot of him in the Rams’ home strip.

Clarke featured several times for the Rams whilst on trial, catching the eye in particular with his goal against Manchester United in a 3-1 victory.

Derby’s academy has a pretty impressive track record of developing youth talent as of late, with owner Mel Morris wanting supposedly wanting 50% of the starting lineup to be academy graduates next season.

Described by The Telegraph as a ‘Patrick Viera-type’ box-to-box midfielder, could the new recruit be the next name to break through into the first team set up?

Have something to tell us about this article?