Jamie Vardy inspiring Easton student following English Colleges call-up
- Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016
A student from Diss has just been called up by a national football team.
Harry Whayman – who is part of the Easton & Otley football Academy – took part in two trials for the English Colleges Football Association.
The 17-year-old's first trial took place at Brooksby Melton College and the second trial took place in Nottingham.
After standing toe to toe with some of the best schools and college players in the country, Harry has just found out that he has made the final England College squad, made up of 18 players.
As part of this squad, first up for Harry will be a trip to St George's Park in Burton at the start of December, when he will take part in a two-day training camp.
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Next will be a fixture against a Chelsea side before Christmas that will take place at their Cobham training ground, and then a tour of Italy beckons in March.
Whayman was released by Ipswich Town after eight years at their academy in the summer. He then joined the football academy at the Norfolk campus of Easton and Otley College.
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The tricky left winger, who can also play up front, still has hopes of getting back into the game in a full-time capacity and news of making this England squad has provided a massive boost to his aspirations.
'I played for Ipswich for eight years and it didn't quite work out,' Whayman said.
'I'd been there for so long so it was hard (being released) – but you have to carry on and I've been working my socks off at Easton and Otley and I've got this opportunity.
'This is a new start and I want to work as hard as I can and progress to the highest level that I can. Four lads from the academy at the college have gone back into the professional game and this is my ambition. It's something I want to achieve.
'This is my first year at Easton and Otley – we have good staff here and the coaches are great. I'm happy where I am and I've just got to keep progressing.
'The thing that motivates me is that anything can happen – you just have to put 110 per cent in. Look at someone like Jamie Vardy.
'He has given hope to a lot of young footballers. I'd like to think I could be the next Vardy – you have to aim high.'
Football coach at Easton and Otley, Dan Connelly, said: 'This is great news for Harry and we are delighted for him. Our coaching team are proud of his efforts. He has shown the correct attitude since coming here and he is going about things in the right way.
'He is working hard and deserves this chance. We wish him all the best and we will be supporting him all the way.'