Taylor made for a pro deal: Ex-Linnets link up in Finland as Lewis Sturman aims to go full-time

Lewis Sturman in action for Holbeach United. Picture: Lincolnshire Free Press Lewis Sturman in action for Holbeach United. Picture: Lincolnshire Free Press

Tuesday, February 4, 2014
9:58 AM

An ex-Linnet is closing in on a dream professional deal thanks to one of King’s Lynn’s former managers.

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Tommy Taylor at the helm for Lynn in 2006. Picture: Matthew Usher.Tommy Taylor at the helm for Lynn in 2006. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Lewis Sturman, 19, has been offered a pro contract by former Walks chief Tommy Taylor, now boss of third-tier PS Kemi Kings in Finland. Having enjoyed a spell with Rushden & Diamonds as a youngster as well as narrowly missing out on joining Norwich City on two separate occasions, it’s an opportunity that the talented teenager admits he is simply thankful for getting.

Sturman, who had a brief loan spell with Wisbech Town last campaign and currently plays for part-time Holbeach United, said: “At the start of this season, Boston United’s manager (Dennis Greene) couldn’t guarantee me first-team football so I decided to move to Holbeach who play in the UCL.

“I’ve spent most of my career to date playing at centre-half as I am 6ft tall. But a lot of managers prefer you to be taller so for the last few months I’ve been playing in midfield where I feel I’ve been thriving.

“When the offer came to go to Finland it wasn’t one that I could ask too many people about really. It was a bit of an unknown what to expect but still a big chance to play professionally.”

The 19-year-old, who lives in Great Ryburgh, near Fakenham, played for his hometown team, Rushden, and Lynn while growing up. After a handful of first-team appearances at The Walks he moved to Boston United and was part of the side that reached the third round of the FA Youth Cup. He also helped Norfolk Under-18s win their first-ever County FA Youth Cup in 2011 along with current Linnets Ryan Fryatt, Tom McLeish, Gino Livoti and Tom Barnes.

Now he is hoping to succeed in Europe under the leadership of Taylor, a man who bossed Lynn from 2004 until he became assistant, and then caretaker manager, at Peterborough United in 2006.

Sturman, who has impressed on trial and is likely to make a decision on his future this week ahead of Finnish football’s return in April, said: “It’s minus 12 degrees out here at the moment. We train twice a day in a massive dome and it’s certainly different, but a great experience.

“Some of the lads out here are from big clubs like Ajax, Monaco and Football League clubs back home. So the quality of football is very good.”

Taylor left Posh in July 2007 to take charge of Boston. Since his departure two years later, he has been manager of the Grenada national team, a director of football at a Spanish club, and boss at non-league Belper Town.

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