Bishop Auckland born Andrew White has been selected for the England Schoolboys Under 18 squad and was a critical part of the team which won 5-0 when they played Australia at Birmingham recently.
Andrew was given a trial for England as a direct result of the Darlington College BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Sport course he is a part of which is run by the Martin Gray Football Academy at the Eastbourne Sports Complex in Darlington.
Andrew recalls kicking a ball for the first time as a toddler with his older brother and his dad who played football at professional and Northern League level respectively.
“Football is in my blood and I am lucky enough to be a left footer which cuts the competition down as there are fewer of us around” said Andrew who plays at centre back. “I knew it was something I wanted to do when I was in year 10 at Longfield Sports Academy and I have given it everything since that time”
“The England trials are different from playing a normal match as you have one chance to make an impact. I enjoyed the trials immensely but the game against Australia was something else, a life changing experience”
“The coaching I have had has been excellent both on and off the field” said Andrew “We not only learn about the physical part of the game but equally important is the mental side. Football is a global industry and I would love to be a part of it in some way in the future”
“There is a lot of luck involved but look at Gareth Bale, he was told he would never make it and where is he now? There are some great opportunities to play, coach and gain scholarships in America where the sport is really starting to take off”