Poppy Fletcher has made Stevenage footballing history by becoming the first development centre graduate to sign for the club.

Having originally joined at the U13 age group, the John Henry Newman pupil has trained and played for the club ever since, signing a deal that will place her in Stevenage's U23 side.

The squad itself will make history too, playing in the FA Women’s National League Reserve Division for the first time this season and Fletcher cannot wait to get going.

She said: "I am really pleased to have been selected for the squad for the forthcoming season.

"I want to thank all of the coaches who have helped me to develop during my time with the girls development centre and I’m excited for the season ahead."

First-team manager Karl Davy said: "Poppy has been training with us for the past few weeks and has impressed all of the senior coaches, especially me. She has shown natural raw ability and has a great attitude.

"I’m sure it won’t be long before she’s pushing to be in and around the first team. Poppy has a really bright future in the game."

Stevenage women's general manager, and head of community engagement, Dani Toyn, believes the signing demonstrates the club are on the right track.

She said: "Everyone at Stevenage Foundation is absolutely delighted for Poppy. She is a very talented footballer and is thoroughly deserving of a place in the women's squad.

"It’s an extremely momentous time for the girls' development centre and the wider women and girls' pathway as Poppy becomes the first graduate to sign for the women’s team.

"It’s extremely pleasing to be able to demonstrate the route that is there for talented young female footballers.

"Poppy is testament to how the GDC can provide an exit route into the women’s team and has worked extremely hard for her opportunity."