Paul Osew’s progress at first-team level has been rewarded with a new contract at AFC Wimbledon.
The 19-year-old left-back, who came through our academy via the Foundation’s college education programme, committed his future to the club by signing on the dotted line today.
It marks a rapid rise for a player who was turning out for Combined Counties League side Raynes Park Vale just a few years ago.
Paul made his league debut at Peterborough United at the end of September – a match that was the first in charge as manager for Glyn Hodges – and he’s made 15 first-team appearances in total.
Speaking shortly after signing a new deal, Paul, who was raised in Brixton, said: “This is another exciting moment for me. It wasn’t long ago when I signed my first pro contract, but to get a renewal now is a big thing for me and for my family, who have provided a lot of support. This is my first professional club so I just wanted to stay here and keep my loyalty to the club.
“I feel that I’ve grown mentally. When I first got my chance I was a bit nervous, but the support from the fans has really helped, they get right behind you. Your confidence builds within the team, giving you belief to show what you can do for the club. Knowing about the history of the club and how much the fans are right behind you boosts my confidence. You want to do more for the club and it makes you proud to wear the badge.”
Paul thanked Glyn Hodges, along with coaches Mark Robinson and James Oliver-Pearce for helping with his development, particularly when he was switched from forward to left-back!
“Robbo and James helped to develop me a lot as a left-back,” recalled Paul. “I was just put there initially and I didn’t know how to adapt to it, but I was able to progress in that position.
“With my experiences of being at other academies, I would say that they looked at me as small, but Glyn likes the way I am. He didn’t think about whether I’m small or not, he just said ‘I like you, I’m going to put you in the team’. He boosted my confidence and I thank the manager for giving me this opportunity. Recently, we’ve been adding in different types of drills in training, which we’ve been bringing onto the pitch. Hopefully, it will help us to win more games. I want to add more to the team, bring more attacking threat with my pace, so that I can add assists and goals.”
You can watch an extensive interview with Paul Osew below, via the link to our official You Tube channel.