Born and raised in Nottingham, England, football was always a part of my daily life because of the culture I grew up in. As soon as I was able to walk, I had a ball at my feet, and fell in love with it immediately. Surprisingly, I wasn't a "die hard" fan of the game early on, but simply found pure joy in playing with the football, trying to invent tricks and creative ways to manipulate it. I developed a good skill set, I was naturally fast, could dribble with close control and shoot with accuracy. It wasn't until the age of 11 until I began my journey applying my abilities in a team environment, when I joined my first amateur club.
During my first season, although I was able to handle the ball, I found the tactical side of the game quite challenging. I would often find myself out of position, offside, or leaving my opponent unmarked. I just wanted to dribble the ball and score goals, but I knew If I wanted to continue playing the game at a higher level, I would have to start taking it more seriously.
During that summer following my first amateur season, I became obsessed, studying, rewinding, questioning, researching. I honestly can't remember a single thing I learnt in high school other than how to kick a ball around a grass pitch. Just like anything in life, the more you do something, the better you get at it, and although I was by no means a prodigy in my teenage years, I started to show moments of potential, and changed my focus from football being just something I loved to do, to something I wanted to do professionally.
From the ages of 11-16 I just played amateur league, working my way up the divisions, playing on a better team or in a better league with each season that passed. When I finished my GCSE's, I had the opportunity to attend a sports college with a full time football development academy. During my 2 years in the academy, I learnt more than I had ever learnt in the previous 6. A combination of being in a competitive training environment every day, and having the guidance of a coach with multiple years of professional playing experience was exactly what I needed to fine tune my game.
During my time in the Academy, I signed my first Semi-Professional contract, and after just a few games got invited to join the Nike Academy, before being picked up by Luton Town; who at the time competed in the lowest tier of full professional football in England. When Luton went into Administration, I decided to broaden my spectrum of possible opportunities, and started seeking professional clubs overseas. Without a huge resume, or reputation, it was tough to be taken seriously by pro clubs. I hadn't had enough experience to convince coaches to take a chance on me, and therefore I made a decision to look into U.S soccer scholarships as a stepping stone.
After sending multiple emails and highlight videos to University coaches all around the U.S, I was offered a full scholarship to play college soccer in the state of New York. Thankfully I thrived in this environment, being named a two time First Team All-American, and multiple conference first team honours. During the summers between college seasons, I competed in the Premier Development League, and trained with a professional club in the USL. At this point my Resume looked a lot more attractive, and so I felt I was ready to take the next step in my career.
After multiple conversations with coaches from clubs all around the world, I signed my first contract that would allow me to play football as my only job with a club in the 2nd Division of Australia. It was not only an opportunity to continue to do what I love, but another chance to explore a new country and culture. Following this season I was presented with a contract offer in the Major Arena Soccer League in the USA, the highest level of indoor football. Always willing to try knew things in order to expand my knowledge and experiences, I signed and currently continue playing professionally in the USA.
My journey has been up and down, and I have traveled literally thousands of miles all over the world to achieve my goals, but it is an adventure that continues to excite me and wake me up every morning. My mission now is continue to strive relentlessly towards my ever growing goals, but to also inspire others to achieve theirs. If you've read this far, I imagine you and I have something in common, to become the best version of yourself and reach your potential, and if that's true... you are in the right place.