United beat Prem pair to land Boro whizkid Seaton

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By Jon Colman

CARLISLE UNITED have beaten off competition from seven clubs – including Premiership giants Aston Villa and Blackburn – to land talented Middlesbrough academy kid John Seaton.

The 15-year-old central midfielder has signed a pre-contract agreement with United and will join the club’s YTS ranks at the start of next season.

United’s head of youth Eric Kinder said he was delighted to have beaten off so much high-profile competition – including his former employers at Ewood Park – to capture Redcar-born Seaton.

Leicester, Darlington, Hartlepool, Scunthorpe and Plymouth were also keen on the teenager.

“He was released by Middlesbrough – which is no disgrace because in my opinion they are the flagship academy club in the country,” said Kinder.

“We invited him here to play in the Under-18 game against Accrington Stanley, and he impressed everybody.

“I knew there was other interest and I thought it would be difficult to get him. I told him to look at all his options and then give us an answer.

“But he then rang me to say he had enjoyed himself so much on that Saturday that he wasn’t even going to talk to the other clubs. He wanted to sign for us.

“I’m absolutely delighted and it shows that the link we have formed with Middlesbrough is working well for us.

“He is a lad who is capable of going far in the game. He knows there is a lot of work to do but he has a good attitude and I’m looking forward to him joining us.”

United’s relationship with Boro has already seen them sign promising youngsters Gary Madine and Michael Dowson, while Josh Newsham recently joined from Blackburn’s academy.