Attleborough youngster to take centre stage at Norwich City match after mascot competition win

Alex Johnson, 9, from Attleborough, will lead out Norwich City against Arsenal in their last match of the season after winning a competition. Alex Johnson, 9, from Attleborough, will lead out Norwich City against Arsenal in their last match of the season after winning a competition.

Lauren Cope lauren.cope@archant.co.uk
Saturday, May 10, 2014
6:59 AM

For many Norwich City fans, there may be little to get excited about ahead of the relegated club’s last game of the season.

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Alex Johnson, 9, from Attleborough, will lead out Norwich City against Arsenal in their last match of the season after winning a competition.Alex Johnson, 9, from Attleborough, will lead out Norwich City against Arsenal in their last match of the season after winning a competition.

But one nine-year-old from Attleborough is looking forward to tomorrow’s match against Arsenal, after finding himself in a starring role.

Alex Johnson, who lives on Leys Lane, entered a competition to be the team’s mascot by writing a letter to his favourite player – and his win means he will lead out the teams before they kick off their last game of the season.

The Attleborough Junior School student entered a Barclays competition last week after some encouragement from his grandfather – but did not have high hopes.

But just a few days later mother Shelley Johnson had some exciting news.

“My granddad forwarded the text on to my to mum to tell me I’d won – I didn’t think I was going to win it because there were loads of people who entered,” he said.

The youngster’s love for Norwich City began three years ago, after his grandfather and uncle took him to Carrow Road – although he joked that the club’s season had made him doubt his choice.

Alex said he was excited to lead the teams out but admitted the thought of walking out on the pitch in front of the crowds made him nervous.

In his winning letter, Alex thanked City goalkeeper John Ruddy for his “fantastic goal saving and legendary skills”.

He added: “It has been tough but you and the rest of the team deserve a medal for your hard work and effort in doing your best for NCFC.”

The youngster even had some words of advice to offer to the team.

He said: “My parents always tell me that as long as you try your best then you can hold your head up high.”

Last month the dedicated fan queued at an open day to make sure his favourite players gave him their autographs – and signatures of Bradley Johnson, Sebastian Bassong, Michael Turner and Alexander Tetty are now proudly displayed in his room.

In his letter, Alex said the memory of meeting Ruddy in Eaton Park makes him “grin from ear to ear”.

“The best of my day is when I met my hero. If I am feeling sad or finding my school work hard (especially maths as I hate maths) I look at the photo and remember that you had to work hard to get what you want.”

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