Bristol Rovers sign up starlet Lamar Powell
Bristol Rovers have beaten off interest from a number of Premier League clubs to secure the future of home-grown whiz kid Lamar Powell.
The young striker, who can also play on either wing, scored an astonishing 52 goals for the club's under-16 side last season and has been making a big impression at a higher level this term.
Even though he only celebrated his 16th birthday last month, Powell has been fast-tracked into the under-18 side and has already scored five goals in seven games.
Arsenal and Chelsea were among a string of top-flight clubs tracking the Bristolian, who yesterday signed a deal which will secure him a two-year scholarship with the Pirates from next summer.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
The former Cotham Grammar School pupil from Stoke Bishop joined Rovers as an 11-year-old and is currently doing a B Tech in sport at Filton College "I've always had ambitions to be a professional footballer, ever since I first started with Shire Colts at under-8 level," said Powell. "To get this scholarship is a dream come true for me.
"After playing in the under-16s, I had to adapt to the speed of the under-18 games because they were a bit quicker and more physically demanding. But hopefully I can carry on scoring goals for the club."
Rovers' head of youth Darren Patterson said: "Lamar has done very well. He got a chance in the under-18s about five or six weeks ago and he really hasn't looked back.
"It's a big jump physically from the under-16s to the under-18s but he has scored goals, his all-round movement has improved and it hasn't fazed him at all.
"He still has plenty to learn, but he has pace and he's a good kid – a very honest boy who enjoys his football here.
"He has heart and desire, he wants to work hard and improve, and that's the type of player we want.
"We have to make sure we safeguard our best talent and ensure we don't give the best ones away cheaply to anyone else before they have a chance to break through into our first-team. He is the first of many that we are hoping to develop and bring through."