A HUDDERSFIELD student has been training with top Premiership stars.
Seventeen-year-old New College student Matt Stor was selected from a Pro FC football camp at Warwick University to spend two days with Harry Redknapp’s Tottenham Hotspur squad in London.
Defender Stor rubbed shoulders with the likes of Dutchman Rafael Van Der Vaart, England’s Michael Dawson and Jermain Defoe and his partner in a keep-ball session was Croatian international Luka Modric.
“To be working with all the first teamers at Tottenham was just brilliant,” said Matt.
“It was a real eye-opener to work at close quarters with professional players who are at the highest level.
“I had the chance to train with them for 10 to 15 minutes and it was stunning to see how they work and what they consider to be the standards for life at that level of the game.”
Formerly with the age-group teams at Leeds United and Halifax Town, the Meltham Under 17 player has represented Huddersfield Minors and attended the inaugural camp run by Pro FC, whose managing director is former league manager Martin Allen.
His team of managers on the camp included ex-Town boss Andy Ritchie and coach Kevin Blackwell, plus Simon Davey, Ian McParland, Phil Parkinson and Steve Staunton.
Allen describes Pro FC as the “X Factor of football” and is accepting applications for two Easter camps at Keele University (April 11-15 and 18-22), when the prize is also to train with a Premier League club.
Martin Allen said: “Matt has done very well and his reward was a trip to train with Tottenham.
“On the first day Harry Redknapp told him he would be doing the warm-up with the first-team squad so he was working alongside people such as Van Der Vaart, Dawson, Defoe and Modric.
“What a fantastic experience for a young lad from Huddersfield to be working alongside top Premier League players, and he’s also been given a fitness and conditioning programme to follow.
“Matt definitely impressed and Kevin Blackwell was the first to say that if he were currently involved at a Football League club he would definitely take Matt to the end of the season and then invite him back for pre-season, just to see how could he could be.”
And for Matt it is now a challenge to put this experience to work in his studies and then into action after college.
“It was fantastic to be picked by Martin Allen and thanks to the experience it should open some doors in the future,” said Matt.
“I now have to look at the experience this has given me and take that through college, hopefully university and then into the workplace.
“I think the main thing I have learned is that fitness is a key area and just what top level players have to do, which just has no comparison to what is done at college level, and it has shown me how differently everything can be done”.