Grecian Academy duo to join up with Young LionsExeter City are delighted to announce that Academy duo Jack Sparkes and Ethan Ampadu have both been called up to a training camp with the England Under-16 squad, which takes place between Friday 17th July and Sunday 19th July at the University of Warwick.
Ethan has previously been involved in the Young Lions’ set-up – after attending a training camp last season, he then represented England’s Under-15s at the Torneo delle Nazioni. Previously he has also featured for Wales at youth international level, with whose Under-16 squad he won the Victory Shield last November.
However it will represent the first international involvement for striker Jack Sparkes, who steps up to Exeter City’s Under-16 squad this summer. Jack will become the seventh player in the last 18 months to come through the Exeter City Academy and feature at international level. He follows in the footsteps of Jamie Reid (Northern Ireland U19 and U21), Jake Gosling (Gibraltar), Christy Pym and Matt Grimes (England U20), Max Smallcombe (Wales U16), as well as Ethan Ampadu.
Everyone involved in Exeter City is extremely proud of both players for earning international recognition, and would like to wish them the best of luck during their time away in Warwick.
Academy Manager Simon Hayward said: “Over the last year and a half, we have reached a completely unprecedented level of international recognition for players who have been educated and brought up within the Exeter City Academy system.
“Jack Sparkes becomes the seventh player in the previous 18 months to have come through our system to be called up – and that reconfirms our belief that what we are doing at the Academy is working.
“We don’t have a huge talent pool to choose from in the South West compared to the major cities, and we aren’t able to bankroll huge investment in the Academy, so we have to work cleverly and think outside the box, and I believe that our success-rate is proving to be outstanding.
“I’m absolutely delighted for Jack Sparkes – he has been really outstanding for the last 18 months. He has always shown promise, but there was a slight change in his attitude around 18 months ago and he showed a little more professionalism and seriousness towards his football, and started working a bit harder – and this is his reward.
“There are still things that we are working on with him and he is by no means the finished article, but he is on a really good path and I hope that he goes up to Warwick and gives a really good account of himself.
“We know that Ethan did okay at the Torneo delle Nazioni on the last time he was called up for England – and I think that his off-the-pitch attributes such as his personality and mentality have really stood out to the FA.
“Likewise for Ethan, there are still elements of his game that he needs to work on – however we try to develop good people as well as good footballers. The feedback from the FA suggested that his football has been good and that his character has been outstanding.
“It’s good for both of them that they have a club-mate that they can travel up with, and I wish them both the very best of luck for their time with England.”