A GOALKEEPER has caught a well-deserved break after being called up by his country.
Benfield School student Will Anderson has been invited to the FA’s national training centre St George’s Park, Burton-on-Trent, to train with other England hopefuls.
The 14-year-old, of Wallsend, already plays in goal for Newcastle United’s Academy after being scouted in 2021, where he trains four days a week after school.
“There were a couple of games last year where I played particularly well and I was spotted by the England scouts,” he said. “My dad and the club got a call from England asking me to go down to St George’s.
“Being called up by my country at just 14 is crazy and, while I am nervous, it is such an honour that I can’t wait to go.”
Will has been playing football since he was six-years-old. His grandfather was a professional player, a striker, and his father was also good at the sport. His club career so far has seen him play for Walker Central, Benfield, East End and Killingworth.
“My dad had me out on the fields kicking balls at me from a very young age and he is so proud,” said Will, an avid Newcastle fan.
On top of the England camp, Will has also been invited to play with Newcastle U16s, playing a year up, at Loughborough, the hub for UK sport, at a four day national tournament.
“I’m lucky in that I have the height, speed and agility to be in goal and then I have had some really great coaching,” he said.
“It has been my dream to be a professional footballer since I was a child. I love being in goal which is as much about tactics as it is physical sport. I have to watch the game, assess the opponents’ strengths and weaknesses and direct my defenders so we can stop them scoring.”
Benfield School headteacher Anthony Martin said: “We are incredibly proud of Will’s achievements both on the pitch and in school where his behaviour is exemplary and he is a brilliant role model for all our students. We look forward to following his career with deep interest and we can’t wait to hear how he gets on at the England training camp.”