A DOZEN of the 13 teenagers offered full-time terms by Morton signed their professional contracts at a special induction evening held at Cappielow.

Manager Allan Moore, assistant Mark McNally and head of youth Derek Anderson were in attendance as the 12 starlets signed on the dotted line.

Aidan Fulton, David McNeil, David Verlaque, Glenn Eadie, Nicky Jamieson, Luke Irvine, Craig Knight, Cameron O'Neil, Stevie Lamont, Jordan Cairnie, Aidan Ferris and Mark Russell all penned deals.

The only one of the 13 players initially offered contracts not to commit to the club was Christopher McLaughlin, a teenager recently released by Falkirk who instead chose to sign for Dundee United.

However, all nine of last year's under-17s squad elected to make the step up, to youth chief Anderson's delight.

He said: "If someone had said to me that nine boys would have been kept on before we started last summer I would have told them they were talking nonsense. To have that many kept on is unreal. Everyone deserves credit for that. From scout Mick Rankin, 17s coaches Derek Allan, Sandy MacLean and James Henry, and Warren Hawke working in the background to the boys themselves.

"I'm not saying they'll all go on and play for the Morton first team, but credit to them. They all worked hard and improved immeasurably over the year and deserved the opportunity.

"They've been told to go and develop and that there's a great platform there for them. And what a chance they've got. If they're doing well they could soon find themselves in the first team. All it could take is a few injuries, a couple of suspensions and for them to be doing well in the reserves for Allan Moore to give them the call."