KANE Ferdinand hopes his impressive first team debut at Oxford United can help him achieve his dream of securing a professional contract at Southend United.

The 18-year-old produced a fine performance in the centre of the park as Blues triumphed 2-0 at the Kassam Stadium.

And he wants it to be the first of many appearances in Paul Sturrock's side.

“My target has always been to get a pro deal at the club and it's going well at the moment,” said Ferdinand, a distant relative of England captain Rio.

“It was great to get my first game and I thought it went OK so hopefully I can get a few more matches now.”

Ferdinand, who has been with Blues since he was 13, played alongside Craig Easton in midfield against the U's.

He looked comfortable on the ball and showed a good reading of the game – despite not playing in his normal position.

“I'm happy to come out and play anywhere I'm needed but I haven't really played midfield much before,” said Ferdinand, who is more used to playing at centre-back or right-back.

“There was may be a little part of me which found it a bit nerve-wracking to be making my first team debut in midfield but that didn't last long.

“I enjoyed it out there but it was quite different to youth and reserve team football as everyone was really in your face much quicker and you didn't have as much time on the ball.”