Derby County’s Academy, which has been flying high of late, gained Category One status in the summer of 2014 and continues to thrive under Darren Wassall and his team.
Jayden Bogle has been highlighted in the EFL’s Youth Development Week as one of the brightest prospects in the EFL, having cemented his place in Derby’s first-team this season under Frank Lampard and made the right-back position his own.
However, he is just one of many to rise through the ranks since the opening of Pride Park Stadium in 1997, with the club handing a number of Academy players their first taste of senior football.
It's a number that is sure to rise in the future with the latest crop of young talent in the ranks.
Here, we take a look at the numbers…
Of those 30+ players to have risen through the ranks, there have been over 1,700 appearances - and more than 1,300 of those have been in the starting XI. That number continues to rise with a total 79 appearances so far this season coming from six academy graduates - 58 of which were starting places.
Take a look at the full Academy Hall of Fame here.
A LANDMARK GOAL…
Mason Bennett’s goal to find the equaliser against Birmingham City in Derby’s 3-1 home victory earlier this season was a landmark goal for Rams’ Academy graduates, with his fourth goal for the club becoming the 100th goal from a player who has risen through the ranks.
Jeff Hendrick is the leading man in front of goal in a Rams shirt, scoring 26 goals in his 207 appearances since he made his debut as a 19-year-old against Burnley in April 2011. Marcus Tudgay, Giles Barnes and Will Hughes have also hit double figures for Derby with 18, 13 and 12 goals respectively.
Jeff Hendrick has racked up the most appearances of any Derby Academy graduate in the past 22 years with 207 – 164 of which were starts – before heading to Burnley in 2016 after seven seasons in Derby’s first-team.
He is one of four to become a centurion for the club, adding to that list is Chris Riggott (100) and Will Hughes (187), whilst Tom Huddlestone’s number continues to grow during his second stint at the club.
THE YOUNGEST RAM…
Bennett, who joined the Derby Academy as a 12-year-old, remains the youngest ever debutant for the Rams, making his full bow against Middlesbrough on 22nd October 2011 aged 15 years and 99 days. He is also the youngest ever goal scorer with a goal against Tranmere Rovers in January 2013 at the age of 16 years and 174 days old.
Both of those records were previously held by Lee Holmes for nine years who made his debut for the club aged 15 years and 268 days on 26th December 2002 against Grimsby Town. He was also 16 when he scored his first Rams goal against Coventry City in a 3-1 victory and was the youngest-ever player to play in the proper rounds of the FA Cup at the time.
Jayden Bogle is having a stellar debut season in senior football. Having become the first player born in 2000 to make a Sky Bet Championship appearance for the club, the 18-year-old full-back’s stats are stacking up as one of the best teenagers in the league this season.
He ranks second in four categories compared to every other teenager in the Championship with 20 key passes, 48 tackles, 57 total dribbles – 32 of which were successful. He also ranks as the third teenager with 1,106 passes.
Bogle also has one assist so far this season, providing Jack Marriott with the winning goal in a 1-0 victory at Wigan Athletic in December.
THE NUMBERS CONTINUE TO GROW…
Frank Lampard has opened a clear pathway for the youth this season which was evident as soon as he arrived at Pride Park with the pre-season fixtures littered with Academy players.
Three teenagers have racked up 38 appearances so far with 18-year-old Bogle leading the way since making his debut in the Carabao Cup victory over Oldham Athletic in August and has since cemented his spot in the starting line-up.
Max Bird, 18, has added to his first-team appearances having made his debut as a 16-year-old last season and this time around he has made his Championship debut when he came off the bench against Swansea City. Luke Thomas (19) made two appearances last season before heading off on loan to Coventry City for the 2018/19 campaign.
Lampard has also named Jayden Mitchell-Lawson (19), Lee Buchanan (17) and Tyree Wilson (16) on the bench for the first time in their young careers this season.
ACADEMY’S SEASON SO FAR…
Both Derby County Under-18s and Under-23s have enjoyed fantastic seasons so far with players making their case to be the next one to make the step up to the first-team.
Justin Walker’s Under-18s remained unbeaten in all competitions from October through to the end of January where they went on a nine-game winning run. That run saw them reach the FA Youth Cup Fifth Round beating Blackpool and Sheffield United before falling 2-1 to Manchester City last week.
The Young Rams still have a good shot at winning silverware this season as they prepare for a Semi-Final against Middlesbrough in the Premier League Cup and currently sit third in the Under-18 Premier League – North, just two points behind leaders Everton.
Meanwhile, the Under-23s are in a tight battle at the top of Premier League 2 Division 1 sitting fourth and five points behind leaders Everton. Darren Wassall’s team are also looking to go through to the next stage of the Premier League Cup which could be sealed on Monday night against Aston Villa with two games left in the group stage.