A new role and a new contract has left Jake Garrett feeling excited for next season already.

Garrett has stepped up to be a regular for the Under-23s in 2021, anchoring the midfield for boss Billy Barr, and has now signed a four-year contract as a sign of how far the teenager has progressed.

The 18-year-old spent much of his time as a defender coming through the ranks at Rovers, as both a centre half and left back, but he has emerged as a key man in the middle of the park for the Under-23s.

His emergence in the second half of the season was one of the real positives for Barr’s side, ending the Premier League 2 campaign in fourth, as Garrett clocked up 14 appearances in all and winning plaudits for his displays.

He has long been tipped as one of the club’s best prospects and hopes are high that he will be able to kick on in his development after agreeing a new long-term deal.

“The last year or so has gone really well for me, playing in central midfield and adapting to a newer role,” Garrett explained.

“I already can’t wait for next season to get started and to kick on now.

“I’ve got a lot to improve on, I know that, but I’m looking forward to getting back out there.

“That’s the challenge for me and I’m ready to go for it.”

His first aim will be to overcome an injury he sustained late in the final game of the season against Chelsea to put himself in a position of featuring for the first-team in their pre-season schedule.

Several of the Under-23s have signed new deals this season, Dan Pike handed a new two-year deal, while Sam Barnes, Louie Annesley, Jalil Saadi and Sam Burns also extended their stays with Rovers.

Lenni Cirino, who like Garrett has impressed when stepping up for Billy Barr’s side, as well as Aidan Dowling, Jared Harlock, Alex Baker and Zak Gilsenan have also agreed their first professional contracts.

Garrett had done similar in March 2020, but with that deal set to expire next summer, Rovers moved to tie down one of their hottest prospects to a long-term extension.

“I’m made up to sign the deal, especially after working so hard to get back from my injury,” Garrett added.

“After signing my first pro contract, I knew I had to graft and work hard to get myself back into the side.

“I’ve shown what I’m made of and I’m delighted that I’ll be staying here long-term.

“It feels like this club is home because I’ve been here so long.

“I can’t thank the staff enough for bringing me through and getting me back from injury.”