Hamilton manager Brian Rice has been left made up for young centre-back Jamie Hamilton after the teenager’s Brighton experience.
The 18-year-old has enjoyed a fast rise to prominence at Accies, becoming a regular feature in first-team plans this season. So far, Hamilton has made 12 appearances for the senior Hamilton side.
It’s caught the eye of some suitors including Premier League side Brighton. Due to the close connections between the two teams, one of which Billy Reid, Brighton’s assistant and former Hamilton manager, it was agreed that the youngster could go down south to train last week for a few days.
Accies boss Rice says he’s thrilled for his young star. In impeccable football surroundings, the 56-year-old believes it’s shown the Hamilton academy graduate what he can achieve if he fulfills his potential.
“I spoke with Jamie on Saturday morning,” said Rice. “It’s a great experience for the kid. I believe he did pretty well so we’ll see what comes of that. The facilities at Brighton are out of this world.
“It’s a fantastic club, I’ve got close connections with a few people at Brighton so I know the type of club it is and the people who are there. He was well looked after and trained with the first-team.
“It gives him an insight into what could happen in the future. That’s got to be his goal, he’s had a wee taste of training down there. He’s seen the facilities and it’ something any young kid would look forward to.
“Hopefully it kicks Jamie on. It speaks volumes about all the work that’s done behind the scenes and by George Cairns in particular. We keep saying there’s a pathway here for the kids, this is their starting point.
“We don’t want it to be their finishing point so it’s a great credit to all the staff here.”