From 1-7 at home to Colchester to flying in the sky: Which former Norwich City star is training to be a pilot?

Simon Lappin in Championship action for Norwich City at Burnley in February 2011. Picture: Paul Ches

Simon Lappin in Championship action for Norwich City at Burnley in February 2011. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images - Credit: Focus Images

An ex-Canaries player could make an unusual career move for a footballer when he hangs up his boots.

Just like the birds after whom Norwich City are nicknamed, former NCFC defender Simon Lappin is flying.

Mr Lappin, who now plays for National League outfit York City, has embarked on training to become a pilot and is close to obtaining his commercial licence.

The 33-year old, who made 124 appearances for City during a seven-year stint at Carrow Road, said he may turn away from the football pitch when he retires and instead focus on aviation - after revealing a lifelong love of aeroplanes.

Mr Lappin told York newspaper The Press: 'When I was a boy, I was looking at football or doing an aeronautical engineering degree at university.

'I saw football, though, as a once-in-a-lifetime thing and went down that route, while realising you need other stuff to go back to later.

'I just want to carry on playing for as long as possible at the moment and, if I don't stay in football in a coaching capacity, which does interest me as well, then I've got that decision to make to pursue a career in flying.

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'It's also been good down the years to do something else that I enjoy to take my focus away from football.'

He said he needs another five hours of flying to obtain his commercial pilot licence.

Having been an unused substitute in City's disastrous 1-7 home defeat to Colchester in 2009 - piloting an aeroplane up in the sky would certainly constitute a contrast for Mr Lappin.

He did enjoy happier times at Carrow Road than that traumatic defeat in that season's curtain-raiser, being a regular member of the starting line-up through 2009-10.

The following season he made 27 appearances in the Championship, and played in the Premier League four times after City secured successive promotions.

To read the full interview with Mr Lappin click here.