AFC TOTTON boss Jimmy Ball has linked up with teenaged talent Jireh Oyebamiji for a third time after the 18-year-old was released by Forest Green Rovers.

The pair first crossed paths when striker Oyebamiji, nicknamed JJ, when he trialled with Stoke City, where Ball was a coach in the academy.

As Ball progressed through the coaching ranks at Forest Green, he brought Oyebamiji to Gloucestershire, linking up again as the attacker heavily featured in Rovers’ academy team.

Born in Abuja, Nigeria, Oyebamiji moved to London as a youngster.

Based in Winchester, the 18-year-old detailed how the pre-standing connection with Ball made it easy for him to join the Stags.

He told the club’s website: “It is my relationship with Jimmy Ball that has encouraged me to move here.

“He has a very good understanding of what makes players tick, when to help and encourage you and when to crack the whip to stop you slacking off.

“Working with him has helped me to use the attributes I have to become a better player, and I’ve enjoyed it.

“There’s a good bond between us and I’m really looking forward to working with him again, here at Totton.”

Prior to the expiry of his contract with Forest Green, Oyebamiji trialled with Championship outfit Huddersfield at the start of May.

As soon as a move to Yorkshire failed to materialise, Ball moved quickly to snap up a player with “tremendous potential”.

“JJ is a player I worked with briefly at Stoke City before taking him to Forest Green,” began Ball.

“In my opinion, JJ has tremendous potential and his attitude and personality are top class.

“He is a dynamic, aggressive centre-forward who scores goals. I believe he will do a great job for the club and go on to achieve great things in the game.”