Pelly signs

West Ham United can confirm the signing of 17-year-old midfielder Pelly Ruddock.

The teenager was registered with the Football League on Monday and will go straight into the development squad as he is ineligible for the FA Youth Cup tie at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Wednesday.

Ruddock had attracted a lot of attention during his rise through the ranks at Boreham Wood. He said the club's reputation for giving youth a chance was key to his putting pen to paper.

"I am really excited to be here," he told West Ham TV. "I feel happy inside and I am just hoping for the best for the future.

"The club's commitment to young players did attract me. It is good at West Ham because a lot of young players have come through and gone on to do good things."

Describing himself as a box to box midfielder, who likes to attack and score goals, Ruddock said he was keen to work hard and prove himself. He had done just that in a successful trial period before his move. "I just want to train and give 100 per cent every time I play."

The teenager said he was determined to keep his feet on the ground despite having been watched by scouts from several clubs before West Ham's move.

"I enjoyed the pressure. I just carried on playing my game and working hard on the training ground. It was a good standard I was playing at and I was coming up against some big men. I just had to put myself about on the pitch."

Ruddock, who hails from west London but will be moving into digs close to Chadwell Heath, paid tribute to those who have helped him get to this stage in his career.

"My family have supported me and continued to support me. They have shown me love and support for the future. My ambition is to get to the first team but I know I have to work hard."