An in-depth look at the short career of our new signing, Alfie Jones...
Bristol-Born Alfie Jones came through the academy setup at Southampton and made seven appearances for the St Mary’s Stadium outfit, all of which coming in the EFL Trophy.
He made his debut against Charlton in August 2016 at the Valley in a 0-0 draw before going on to help the young Saints secure two wins and a further draw in the competition. Three more appearances in the same competition followed in 2017/18 – along with his first career goal – which came in a 1-0 victory over Cambridge United in October 2017.
It was in the 2018/19 season that Jones gained his first taste of senior football with a successful loan spell at Scottish Premiership side St Mirren. He made 15 appearances in all competitions – with 14 of those coming in the top-flight of Scottish football. His solitary goal for the Buddies came against Livingston in December 2018 before being recalled by his parent club later in the same month.
Last season saw Jones enjoy another productive temporary stint away from Southampton – this time at League One side Gillingham. Naturally a right-sided centre-back, the youngster showcased his versatility in a Gills shirt with Steve Evans also utilising him as a defensive and central midfielder – doing so in impressive fashion as he racked up 35 appearances in all competitions.
The fact that he was a mainstay in the team showed that he was more than capable of coping with the demands of senior football in what was his first taste of regular league football in England. The 22-year-old also found the back of the net twice during his time at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium, netting in a 2-2 draw with Tranmere Rovers in September 2019 and a 3-1 home win over Southend United the following month.