Getting to know. . . Keston Davies
26th March 2016
As part of our Swans Academy content, we speak to an upcoming talent within the youth ranks at the club.
Next in our in-depth interview is under-21s defender Keston Davies, who discusses swappingSA1 for London, lifting silverware and signing a new contract.
After putting pen-to-paper on a new two-year deal at the Liberty Stadium, Keston Davies is aiming to turn a dream of playing for Swansea City into a reality within the next 24 months.
The 19-year-old central defender, who grew up watching the Swans at the Vetch Field, has been with the club's academy since the age of eight and this season has played a key role at the heart of Swans Under-21s' back line.
"I have to pinch myself sometimes at just how much has changed in the last ten years and what I have done during that time," says Davies.
"It all seems a dream. It feels just like yesterday that I was down the Vetch or Liberty Stadium watching Lee Trundle, and now I have the opportunity to play on the same pitch for the 21s."
After a successful few seasons with the foundation phase of academy football (age eight to 11), Davies was handed the opportunity of a fresh challenge with Fulham's academy.
The move would mean the young defender would have to say goodbye to the life he had grown up with and was used to in Swansea.
"I was 12 when I left the Swans," he said. "I had an offer to join a new club in London, which, at the time, was a fantastic opportunity for me.
"A move like that at such a young age was a fantastic experience but it did make me homesick.
"At one point we were playing so many games I was not able to get home for around nine weeks. To be away from my family so much was a big thing.
"Playing so far away from home did help me mature and grow up much faster. I used to have to get the train to London and back on my own when I was 14, not having a clue what I was doing.
"The experience, though, did mean I got a taste of category one football at a much earlier age, which was hugely beneficial towards my development. We played teams like Arsenal and Chelsea on a regular basis."
Despite enjoying the challenge of being at a new club, Davies' heart was never far from Swansea.
At the age of 15, the Davies said goodbye to his life in London to head back to SA1 and was soon awarded a scholarship to play with the Swans Under-18s.
"It was great to come back home," admitted Davies. "The experience at another club had helped me grow and develop but it was the best thing for me to come back.
"I was reunited with players I had originally played with like Owain (Jones) and Kyle (Copp).
"A new contract here reinvigorated me and pushed me on to want to prove something to people. As soon as I came back, we all just clicked again."
Davies captained the team that successfully helped an Under-19s side retain the FAW Youth Cup last season with a 3-1 win over Cardiff.
He helped the Swans to victory by heading home the opening goal after just two minutes at the Cardiff City Stadium.
"It was a great day and a fantastic achievement, not just for me personally but for everyone who was a part of that squad.
"I captained the side and managed to get the first goal by getting my head on the end of a cross from Kyle early in the game.
"We went on the lift the trophy, which was an amazing feeling for everyone.
"We hope to repeat our success in the competition this season having recently made it to the semi-final stage."
Having taken the step up to Under-21 level this campaign, Davies found himself on the fringes of the squad at the start of this season.
But after securing three wins from their first five games, coaches Gary Richards and Cameron Toshack included the central defender in the team to face Newcastle in September.
"It was all about having patience and waiting for my chance," added Davies.
"I was given an opportunity to start against Newcastle and I knew I needed to grab it with both hands to keep myself in contention.
"It was tough game but we had a good performance that day and managed to take a well-earned point away from home.
"I managed to score my first goal of the season in our next match at home to Aston Villa and it has gone on from there.
"Now my aim is to push on, work as hard as I can and show what I can do for the rest of the season.
"I would like to get myself in contention to be on the pre-season tour and gain some first-team experience on loan in the Football League."
READ MORE . . .
- Shephard makes Yeovil loan
- Renew your season ticket
- Win a signed Sigurdsson shirt
- Kingsley's memorable month
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