An Ockbrook School student is one step closer to achieving his professional football dreams after signing a contract with Burton Albion Football Academy.
Taylor Kalinins, a Year 7 pupil at Ockbrook School, has been described as a “passionate fan of football” and a “raw talent” by his school.
The 11-year-old was spotted by Brewers’ scouts playing for his local team and received an invite to a six-week trial at the Championship club’s academy.
Taylor said: “My trial went really well and I must have impressed the coaches with my skills, pace and quick feet.
“I’ve now signed a contract and am very much looking forward to starting my training and working really hard to achieve my dream of becoming a professional footballer!”
His mum, Hayley, added: “The coaches at the academy look for passionate players that are fearless, hardworking and committed, so recruits can eventually progress into the first team.
“The standard is very high and even though Taylor has the ability to develop into a professional player, he is very aware that there is only a one per cent chance of this happening and how hard he must work in order to make his dream a reality.”
He will train three nights a week at the English FA’s national football centre, St George’s Park, in Burton-upon-Trent on a weekly basis.
Ockbrook School headmaster, Tom Brooksby, congratulated Taylor.
He said: “Huge congratulations to Taylor! He is a prime example that if you’re truly passionate about something you can go on to achieve great things.
“Ockbrook boasts a stellar portfolio of students who have succeeded in professional careers and Taylor could be the next.”