Two of Ebbsfleet United Academy’s rising stars have been praised after their first taste of regular senior, first-team action.
Leo Mazzone and recent addition to the first-team squad Casey Johnson have both been on loan at Ryman Division One South club Redhill and have earned a glowing reference from the club’s manager Mike Maher.
Mazzone scored his first senior goal at the Surrey club recently while Johnson made his debut for the Lobsters in their last game. Maher wrote to Academy boss Daryl McMahon to say of the two Fleet loanees: “Leo has been sensational and made a very positive impact on the team since joining us. He was absolutely magnificent in our last match. Casey came on from the bench in our last game and made a great impact also and hit the crossbar with a powerful header. It is a great credit to Ebbsfleet United that they are producing boys of this quality.”
The Ryman League level at which Mazzone and Johnson are playing is an ideal taster of first-team action for the Academy players and John Akinde memorably made his first steps in senior football at just such a level in a loan to Whitstable Town in 2007, prior to making his Fleet breakthrough.
The club are presently in contract negotiations with some more of the Academy players with a view to keeping them at Stonebridge Road in the long term.