Getting to know. . . Swansea City Under-18s defender Aaron Lewis
31st December 2015
As part of our new Swans Academy content, we speak to an upcoming talent within the youth ranks at the club.
Next under the spotlight is under-18s defender Aaron Lewis, who discusses his family ties to the Busby Babes, how he's studied Brazil legend Roberto Carlos and why he's eager to take on more responsibility this season.
Swansea City Under-18s are just finishing off another tough training session in preparation for their next fixture.
Running the rule over the group of young Swans starlets, it quickly becomes apparent that the character and personality of each player is expressed through their style of play and how they communicate - none more so than one particular player.
Full-back Aaron Lewis stands out as one of the big characters amongst Swansea's U18 squad as he ushers the defence forward before receiving the ball himself, turning to beat his marker and playing a forward pass into space.
With an attacking instinct, there's no surprise his idol is none other than Brazilian legend Roberto Carlos.
"Tomas Rosicky and Angel Rangel have always been stand-out players for me," he answers. "But my main idol growing up has to be Roberto Carlos - I liked the way he played.
"He was a real attacking full-back and would take care of his defensive responsibilities but made sure he got forward at the right moment to influence the attacking side of the game.
"That is the sort of player I want to be like. I like to watch clips of him and other full-backs to learn from each one and try and implement their strengths into my own game."
The 17-year-old is another of the Under-18s group who has risen through the ranks of Swansea's academy, having made his first appearance for the club at the age of 10.
But while his past and present is with the Swans, family ties also link Lewis to one of the most famous football dynasties in the world - the Busby Babes and Manchester United.
"My uncle Kenny (Morgans) was a Swan as well, but he is more famously known for playing for Manchester United," reveals Lewis.
Born in Swansea, Morgans went on to sign for the Red Devils' youth team when he left school at the age of 16 and played under United's famous manager - Sir Matt Busby.
The young Welshman went on to play alongside some of the best young footballers in the UK, including Manchester United legend Bobby Charlton.
The Munich Air Crash in 1958 robbed the footballing world of eight of the Busby Babes - Morgans, being the last survivor to be rescued from the wreckage, was one of the lucky few to survive the crash.
"He always told me stories of the Busby Babes and playing for Manchester United, but after that he came back to play for his local side Swansea," adds Lewis.
"He was - and still is - a big influence on my career. He would always talk to me and give me good advice."
Sadly, Lewis' uncle Kenny passed away in 2012, but his link to Swansea City still lives on though his nephew.
"It was nice to have someone in my family that I could look up to and follow in the footsteps of," the Swans youngster continues.
"I am proud of what he did. He is someone I can look up to and is proof of what can be achieved with hard work.
"I think he enjoyed watching me play, knowing that I was part of Swansea City's academy."
After helping Swans Under-19s lift the FAW Youth Cup at Cardiff City Stadium last season, Lewis admits he is relishing the chance of taking on more responsibility within the group this season as a second-year scholar.
"Ten players have become first-year scholars and joined the under-18s recently," adds Lewis.
"Over twelve months ago I was in that position, so I hope I can pass on some of the things I've learned on to them and be more of a leader this season.
"It has been good to get to know the lads over the last few months - both on and off the pitch.
"Our pre-season trip to Prague was a great opportunity for all of us to get to know one another and gel together before the season started.
"Playing category one football this season has been a challenge. We will have to keep going as a team and show good character."