Reepham High School celebrates success of former pupil Jed Steer after man-of-the-match performance for Norwich City against West Brom in FA Cup

Watching the FA Cup highlights on Saturday night one man at Reepham High School could feel particular pride.

Tim Gibbs, PE teacher and head of year at the school knew Jed Steer was something special when he first arrived aged 11.

'From the word go he was a top class lad,' said Mr Gibbs. 'He was charming and level-headed with good friends and a good family and the thing that stood out about him was he treated football like a job.'

The 19-year-old, who has held a season ticket at Carrow Road since he was five, stole the show in Norwich's win at West Brom thanks to his shot-stopping which manager Paul Lambert described as 'world class'.

But Mr Gibbs never played the young prodigy in goal, putting Jed at centre back with Tom Knights who went on to play rugby union for England U16's.


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Mr Gibbs said the defensive pairing used to 'chew up and spit out' the opposition attack.

'He was a big strong lad. Even at centre back he would dominate the game,' he said.

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Jed was so adept in defence that he was moved into the year above's football team which went on to win the Norfolk Cup.

And by the time he reached Year 10 Jed was regularly playing with Norwich's academy.

'I have seen dozens of boys who have got to that stage and think they have made it,' said Mr Gibbs. 'But he worked hard and never had the attitude - these lessons don't matter because I'm going to be a professional footballer.'

Mr Gibbs gave an assembly to pupils at the school this morning about listening and taking advice on board and used Jed as a prime example.

He said: 'When he played for England U16s we all thought he had made it but he was just trying to get on the ladder. 'He is so focused and was never complacent or arrogant. He was a genuine team member.

'As head of year I didn't want to fall into the trap of thinking he should do more for the school.

'He was training hard with Norwich and we didn't want to do anything that might jeopardise that.'

Jed, who was also a talented all-rounder on the cricket pitch, was snapped up by city's academy when he was spotted playing in goal for Drayton under-9s.

City invited the youngster for a trial and when he turned 17 he was offered a professional contract.

After his performance on Saturday the young keeper is being tipped for great things, and his determination to reach the top shone through in his post-match interview.

'It is brilliant he (Lambert) has confidence in me but I know I've got to keep working hard. That was just the first step on the ladder.'

•Did you play in the same team as Jed at school? Contact reporter Tom Bristow on 01603772313 or email tom.bristow@archant.co.uk

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