‘It’s so inspiring for everyone’- Todd Cantwell’s former teachers and coach delighted after midfielder shines on Norwich City league debut
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The former teachers and coach of Norwich City player Todd Cantwell have spoken of their pride after the youngster made his first league start for the club against Reading on Wednesday evening.
The midfielder from Dereham impressed on his first Championship start, assisting striker Teemu Pukki for City's first goal in a valuable 2-1 away victory.
Andy Mason, head of Northgate High School where Cantwell attended, said: 'It's a fabulous achievement to do what he has done and achieve his goal. He always knew exactly what he wanted to do and we could see that confidence as a pupil.
'We're very proud of what he has achieved to go from here to playing for Norwich. It's so inspiring to the young people here.
'He worked so hard to get there. He came back to the school as the guest speaker this year for our annual sports awards to talk about how he came from Northgate doing what he loved.'
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Cantwell played several times for his school, winning the Norfolk Cup two years in a row in years seven and eight.
Head of PE Richard Phillis said he could always see his talent.
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He said: 'He worked so hard for the team and contributed above and beyond.
'He was confident and committed and could turn a game on its head with his unbelievable skill and talent.'
Tom Parke, who now tutors at DESA, also coached Cantwell at under 9 level when he was at Norwich City Academy, as well as facing him on numerous occasions when coaching other sides.
He said: 'It was pretty obvious that he was going to do well. One of his best attributes is that he hates losing.
'He has an admiration for the game and that shows when he plays. He always wanted to get on the ball.
'I've come up against him many times and he would run the game so we had to man mark him. The biggest compliment I can give him is that we had to try and stop him.
'As a product of Dereham Town Youth, we as a club are immensely proud.'