Four youth academy prospects pen professional contracts for 2023/24

We are pleased to announce that four academy graduates have signed new deals with the club and will be part of the first-team squad during the 2023/24 campaign.

Alex Hernandez and George Harrison have signed their first professional contracts with York City, while Jonny Haase and Jonny Shepherd are renewing their deals.

Young forward Alex Hernandez, who joined the club’s youth-team set-up last season and finished as the U19s top scorer, netting 17 goals in 28 appearances for Tim Ryan’s side, has signed his first professional contract with the Minstermen.

Having previously played in the youth ranks at Bradford City, he became a big part of the U19s side who finished third in their league and won the National League Alliance Academy Cup.

18-year-old right-wing-back George Harrison joined the club’s youth team part way through the 2021/22 season and scored five goals in 25 appearances for Tim Ryan’s side in 2022/23.

Alongside playing for the U19s, he spent the second half of last season out on loan at Bridlington Town, gaining some valuable minutes in men’s senior football.

19-year-old former Youth Team captain Jonny Haase was involved in last season’s National League Academy Cup success and will hope to impress manager Mikey Morton in pre-season ahead of the new campaign.

The left-back signed his first professional contract with the club in the summer of 2021 under former manager Steve Watson, and went on to make his debut in City’s 3-1 win over Southport in the National League North early in the 2021/22 season.

He has had further tastes of men’s senior football during loan spells at Guiseley and Eccleshill United.

Jonny Shepherd had an impressive campaign in front of goal during the 2022/23 campaign, netting a total of 20 goals in 28 appearances, including 14 goals in 17 games for Tim Ryan’s side.

During that run, the 19-year-old striker also scored six goals in eleven appearances on loan for Northern League Division One side Northallerton Town and had another loan spell at eighth-tier side Tadcaster Albion.

Nine U19s academy players have been released from the club, with Michael Hogan, Nathan Heaton, Craig Magwere, Jacob McLoughlin, Tom Pickles, Max Ezard, Tom Algar, Billy Gordon and Kieran Clayton all not being offered professional terms and have all left the club.

The deals are subject to National League and FA approval

First-year pros Jacob Bulmer, Elliot Owen and Ben Dale have also departed the club ahead of the new 2023/24 campaign.

The departing academy players will be offered support by the York City FC Academy aftercare programme and will be assisted in finding new clubs to continue their journey in football.

We wish the departing players all the best for their future careers and thank them for their commitment whilst with the club.