A TALENTED teenage footballer from Ripon has been offered a prestigious place at a soccer coaching centre to develop her skills.
Goalkeeper Lauryn Colman, who turns 15 tomorrow, September 24, has been picked to join the U-17s team at North Yorkshire Girls’ Centre of Excellence in York – one of 30 centres throughout England which play a key role in the Football Association’s development of female footballers, with the best players recommended for trials at national level.
Lauryn, who attends St John Fisher High School in Harrogate, will be sponsored during the 2011/12 season by Ripon Races and will wear the company’s ‘Yorkshire’s Garden Racecourse’ logo on her training sweatshirt.
Managing director James Hutchinson said: “It’s important for us to be able to support someone who is local and young in something that they are excelling at and it is a good opportunity for us to put something back into the community.”
Lauryn first kicked a football at the age of four and joined junior side Ripon City Panthers at the age of seven.
Initially a striker, Lauryn caught the goalkeeping bug after being asked to go in goal from time-to-time by Panthers manager Neil Anderson who found himself short of a player in that position.
Mr Anderson, who retired from managing this year after 15 seasons, said: “Lauryn has shown excellent perseverance and enthusiasm for football.
“She has never shirked from playing against stronger and older girls and she isn’t frightened of anyone. I wish her every success and look forward to seeing her play for England in the future.”
During the 2011/12 season, Lauryn will play with the North Yorkshire U-17s team in league and cup competitions against rivals such as Sheffield, Leeds, Lincoln, Teesside, Manchester, Liverpool, Everton, Blackburn, Derby and Stoke.