Raith Rovers have rewarded hot prospect Lewis Vaughan with an extended contract following his impressive breakthrough into the first team.
The 17-year-old signed an improved three-year deal this week, committing himself to the Kirkcaldy club until the summer of 2016.
Raith boss Grant Murray has tipped the young forward to go far in the game, and despite his tender years, he expects Vaughan to play an important role this season.
“Lewis deserves to be where he is,” Murray said.
“Ever since John McGlynn brought him to the club he’s shown he has great ability.
“He was a member of the first team squad last season, now he’s capable of being a first team player.
“He has shown the right attitude on his apprenticeship and the club see the potential he has. The onus is now on Lewis to stake a claim to be a first team regular. His age is not stopping him.”
Raith first team coach Laurie Ellis has also worked closely with Vaughan and does not expect his age or lack of height to hold him back.
“The fact that he’s 17 doesn’t really come into it for us,” he said. “You merit your slot and all the young players at the club have got to realise that because there’s other talent there.
“But Lewis is the one at the moment that’s pushing for a place and he deserves it.
“People might say he could do with a few extra inches in height, but he’s so quick and strong that he gets away with it. He’s wee and stocky and that makes him a real nuisance to defenders.
“He’s a great prospect but it’s now all about his approach over the next couple of years.”
Vaughan will be part of the squad that travels to Dumfries on Saturday to face Queen of the South who, like Raith, have started the league season with a win, two draws and a defeat.
Dougie Hill also returns after sitting out a suspension.
Murray added: “It’s our first time on astroturf this season and that’s something we’ll have to adapt to.”