EVEN though he has “a lot of areas to work on,” Steve Price is confident Matty Ashton will be ready to feature extensively in the Warrington Wolves first team next season.

The Wire confirmed the signing of the Championship’s leading try-scorer on Tuesday, with the Swinton Lions flyer signing a two-year deal from 2020.

> More on Matty Ashton's 'dream' move to Warrington here

Ashton has a superb record of 23 tries in just 22 Championship appearances but this will be his first taste of professional rugby league.

Wolves have paid an undisclosed transfer fee for the 21-year-old, who will compete for a spot at full-back and on the wing.

At this early stage of his career, though, Price sees the Rochdale Mayfield amateur primarily as a wide player.

Warrington Guardian:

Matty Ashton. Picture by Pete Green

“He’s only a young fella and he’s a late developer,” he said.

“He’s got good height and he’s the top scorer in the Championship even though he missed the first few games.

“There’s so much more growth in him – he’s the first to admit that he’s got a lot more learning to do in terms of understanding the game.

“I feel we can turn him into a competent first-team player.

“At the moment, we see him as a winger until he gets comfortable in his surroundings. He needs to get bigger and stronger as well.

“He’s a young kid who’s willing to work hard and more importantly, to listen.

“I’d like to think any player we sign can come in and make an impact straight away.

“It’s early days – he’s got a lot of areas to work on.”

In the shorter term, Price is busy preparing his Wire side for Friday's crucial trip to neighbours Wigan Warriors.

Already without Josh Charnley (knee), Blake Austin (ankle) and Jack Hughes (ruptured testicle), The Wire have a fresh injury concern in the shape of Danny Walker, who injured his ankle in last week's defeat to St Helens.

Warrington Guardian:

Danny Walker picked up an ankle injury against St Helens last week. Picture by Mike Boden

"Charners is still out, as are Blake and Jack Hughes," Price said.

"Danny Walker picked up an ankle injury early on in the game, which is unfortunate because every time he’s been given an opportunity he’s been able to hold his head high because he’s made a difference for us.

"He won’t be available for Friday."

The injuries may mean another chance for teenagers Josh Thewlis and Riley Dean after both slotted in against Saints last week.

Warrington Guardian:

Josh Thewlis celebrates scoring against St Helens. Picture by Mike Boden

Warrington Guardian:

Riley Dean evades the St Helens defence. Picture by Mike Boden

"I was really pleased with both of them, to be honest," Price said.

"They can certainly hold their heads high.

"Both of them have a bright future, but it’s important that they remain grounded.

"They have a lot of hard work ahead of them. If they do that, they will have long careers with us."

Price will name his squad for Friday's game at lunchtime today.