Obafemi signs contract with former FA Cup winners
Southampton have tied 18-year-old forward Michael Obafemi to a new three-and-a-half-year contract after impressing in the first team.
Obafemi was brought in from Leyton Orient in 2016 and has long been considered a future regular, having made his league debut for the club in January 2018. That made him the second-youngest player to feature for Saints in the Premier League, and he has kicked on this season.
The Republic of Ireland international has made five league appearances in 2018-19, even starting the 2-2 draw with Manchester United on December 1, before scoring his first top-flight goal in a 3-1 win at Huddersfield Town three weeks later. Obafemi was eligible to represent England, Nigeria, and the Republic of Ireland. However, in November 2018 he committed to the Republic of Ireland.
Obafemi whose older brother Afolabi Obafemi is also a footballer has represented the Republic of Ireland at under-19 level, debuting during the 2019 UEFA European Under-19 Championship qualification campaign. On 6 November 2018, Obafemi was named in the senior Republic of Ireland squad for the first time for the friendly against Northern Ireland on 15 November and the UEFA Nations League match against Denmark on 19 November 2018.
He came on as a substitute in the second half of the 0–0 draw against Denmark to make his debut. He also became the first player born in the 2000s to win a senior cap for Ireland. He is now set to remain at the club until 2022.