A PROMISING prospect from Ayr United's youth academy has been awarded his first professional contract with the Championship side.

Fraser Bryden has put pen to paper on a deal until June 2024 with the Honest Men.

From following the club as a fan to making his way into the first team for the club in their 1-0 win at home to Arbroath last Saturday, the student at Grange Academy in Kilmarnock has had a swift rise.

Davie White, head of the academy at Ayr, said: "Fraser's a huge Ayr United fan and his journey with the club started with AUFA community sessions in Dailly when he was seven.

"He signed for the Academy when he was 10 from Carrick BC.

"He's a very hard-working striker who has scored a lot of goals in academy football. He's now facing the hardest transition to move into first team football and train and play with men, but so far he's taken that challenge head on and I've no doubt he will continue to work hard to improve.

"He's got some great role models in the squad at the moment and I'm looking forward to working with Lee to continue to help develop him as best I can."

He made his first appearance for the club's first team when he came on as a substitute with 20 minutes left of Ayr's victory at home to Dick Campbell's league leaders last Saturday.

The club's new head coach Lee Bullen, for whom Saturday's match was his first in the Somerset Park hot-seat, told the Advertiser afterwards that Bryden's debut was "an excellent moment" for the club.