Aston Villa have one of the most prosperous academies in English football right now.
And the steady stream of highly-rated youngsters into the first-team has at least given the fans something to shout about during one of the most difficult times in the club’s history.
Since the start of this season, Keinan Davis has emerged as one of Villa’s first-choice centre-forwards, the thrilling winger Andre Green has made great strides forward and technical number ten Callum O’Hare (below) has made his long-awaited bow on the first-team stage.
But there is more where that came from. And not just in the under-21s either.
Villa fought off competition from some of France’s biggest sides when they snapped up a little known teenager called Dimitri Sea from Boulogne-Billancourt in the summer, but the striker is starting to turn heads behind the scenes at Bodymoor Heath.
A powerful and quick centre-forward, Sea has all the natural attributes to succeed well above his age group. It is telling that he is the only member of the under-18s to feature for Villa’s under-23 side this season.
In six games in the U18 Premier League, Sea has scored three times. Villa’s gain, then, looks like being the loss of countless French clubs who rejected him during various trial periods, as reported by Birmingham Live.
“He's a match killer,” Boulogne-Billancourt’s Technical Director Bertrand Rebours told Birmingham Live. "He has a spontaneous technique, he goes fast, he jumps up, very good head play, an incredible strike and an impressive collective sense.
"When you have Dimitri in your team you know you can win at any time. He is a rare scorer, he just needs a ball to find the net.”
Could Sea be the next academy star to force his way into Bruce’s senior side?