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Page last updated at 10:34 GMT, Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Jersey's Boyle to sign for Saints

Jack Boyle
Boyle played in both of Jersey's games at the small nations tournament

Jersey midfielder Jack Boyle has agreed a six-month contract with Championship side Southampton.

The 18-year-old, who was man of the match in the Muratti with Guernsey in May, was spotted by Saints chairman Michael Wilde.

"We believe he's got a natural talent and it's a question now to see whether he can develop that over the next six months," he told BBC Jersey.

Wilde, who lives on the island, is a major sponsor of football in Jersey.

"I first saw Jack playing in the Muratti where he won man of the match," he added.

"We had him over to Southampton for a couple of trial games and he did particularly well considering he hasn't had an academy background.

I'm too old for youth team football, so I will be playing and training with the reserves at a very, very high standard every day

Jack Boyle
"With a bit of commitment and hard work I think by the end of six months we'll be able to see if he can make it with the club and see if we can sign him on a longer contract at that time."

Boyle was an integral part of the Jersey team that beat Guernsey in May's Muratti and scored a last-minute equaliser to take the match into extra-time which his side won on penalties.
He also scored twice for his club side Jersey Scottish in their Le Riche Cup final win over league champions St Paul's.

Boyle, who has had trials at a number of professional sides, said he is looking forward to the chance to show his potential.

"When you go away on trail it's hard to step up and I've been knocked back at a few places but Southampton seemed to see something and have a bit of confidence in me."

And Boyle said he owes a lot to the Saints chairman who has been instrumental in getting him trials and his contract at the south-coast club.

"He's been a really, really big help. Ever since the Muratti he saw me and thought I was alright at football, if it wasn't for Michael Wilde I don't think I'd be in this position."

Boyle will sign his first contract in front of the Saints fans at St Mary's before the start of their Championship clash with Wolves on Saturday, 15 November.

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see also
Madeira win small nations event
10 Nov 08 |  Football
Jersey win Muratti on penalties
06 May 08 |  Football
Scots win Le Riche Cup thriller
19 Mar 08 |  Football
Jersey player gets Oldham trial
07 Feb 08 |  Oldham

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