By Dominic Toner

Everton starlet Beni Baningime has signed his first professional contract, it was announced on Thursday morning.

The Toffees announced on their official website that the 18-year-old has agreed a deal which expires at the end of the 2017/18 season.

Baningime has been an important player for the club’s Under-23s side this campaign and the midfielder has looked impressive.

Baningime has risen through the Everton academy ranks and captain the Under-18s to victory at the Dallas Cup in March.

David Unsworth is the manager of the Everton Under-23s team and they have a bunch of talented players amongst their ranks, Tom Davies and Liam Walsh.

Baningime has made seven appearances this season and has looked assured as a central midfielder.

He will hope to continue his development in the Merseyside club and eventually reach Ronald Foeman’s first-team.

The youngster moved to England from the Democratic Republic of Congo at the age of eight and will be delighted with his professional deal.

Everton are well recognised for delivering top class players through their academy and current star Ross Barkley is one of them.

Wayne Rooney and Leon Osman are also well recognised names who started at the Toffees’ academy.

In other Everton transfer news, contract negotiations are set to begin with a 27-year-old after Steve Walsh sanctioned scouting mission.