Jake Hesketh is hoping to repay the faith shown in him, after putting pen to paper on a four-and-a-half year contract at Southampton.
Hesketh has been involved with the first-team this season in both the EFL Cup and the UEFA Europa League, scoring his first senior goal against Crystal Palace in September.
And having been at the club from a young age, the 20-year-old was delighted to extend his stay at St Mary’s until 2021.
“I’ve been here a long time and it’s all I really know in terms of football. I’m really happy, I’ve really enjoyed my time and I’ve grown up with people I’ve been with since I was eight, so it’s nice,” Hesketh said.
“Four-and-a-half years is an investment from them and all I can do is try to repay them as such.
“Obviously they’ve seen something in me, they believe in me and hopefully I can show that out on the pitch.
“There was no doubt in my mind when I was offered the deal. The new manager has come in and there is plenty of opportunities and loads of young players are taking them.
“That’s a positive for me. Over the new four-and-a-half years my aim is to cement a place in his squad.”
The cultured midfielder impressed Claude Puel, before picking up an injury that has curtailed his bright and burgeoning season.
But having signed his new deal, the short-term aim is to continue to impress and build upon his maiden professional strike.
Hesketh added: “Firstly, I think it’s a case of getting my head down and working hard to get back fit because it’s been a frustrating couple of months really.
“Hopefully I’ll be back in January time and then I’ve got to do what I was doing to try and impress the manager to persuade him to give me another opportunity.
“You have the belief in yourself that you can play at that level. Obviously, you have played at every level going up through the Academy ladder.
“To play in the first-team is one thing but to get a goal was massive for me. Being an attacking player, goals and assists are what I play for.
“That’s what I hope to do going into every single game so to be able to do that at first-team level is the end goal.”