Swansea City's Ben Davies thrilled with his rise into the first team

Ben Davies

Ben Davies has to pinch himself when he thinks about his meteoric rise to the first team at Swansea City.

The 19-year-old left back was in the youth team last season and hoping to be given a chance this term.

But he has been an ever-present in the first team after Welsh international Neil Taylor broke his ankle against Sunderland on 1 September.

"It's all come pretty quickly really from making my debut to where I am now," said Davies.

"I was hoping to break into the first team squad, maybe get a few appearances on the bench, and perhaps make my debut in the team.

"But all that's happened for me already in the season. I've just had the chance to play the games and I feel I've taken that opportunity."

Davies and the Swans are riding high in seventh place in the Premier League after back-to-back wins over West Brom and Arsenal.

They take on Norwich City at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday with the young defender keeping calm about his new-found fame.

Welsh-speaking Davies was still on an apprentice salary of £400-a-week before singing a new three-and-a-half year deal in November.

That followed a whirlwind three months which saw him make debuts for both the Swans and Wales, vindicating his decision to choose football over cricket and rugby.

He was captain of all three teams in his school - the Welsh language secondary, Ysgol Gyfun Ystalyfera.

"It was always football I was better at, though I was quite good at the other two sports in school," said Davies.

"But football was always my priority because I'd always been with the academy down here [Swansea City] since I was young."

The new contract also underlined the faith manager Michael Laudrup has shown in Davies since the injury to the highly-rated Taylor.

That was first hinted at when Davies kept his place in the team after Laudrup recruited experienced Dutch defender Dwight Tiendalli following Taylor's mishap.

"I kind of expected Michael Laudrup to bring somebody else into the team, someone with maybe a bit more experience which was kind of expected," said Davies.

"But to keep my place in the team and for him to show the faith in me that he has, has been a great confidence boost."

Davies might be a Premier League footballer now, but he hasn't yet fallen for the expensive trappings that accompany the profession.

"I haven't really done much with it [the money] so far, it's just coming in weekly and I'll just save it for now.

"I 100%, definitely, out of the first team have got the most modest car. It's a Volkswagen Polo."

Listen the The Back Page's interview with Ben Davies from 08:30 GMT Saturday morning on BBC Radio Wales.

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