Morgan becomes latest star to sign

1 week ago By David Watters

Teenager Morgan Willians has been congratulated on becoming the latest Northern Premier League Football Academy student to sign a first team contract.

The NPLFA student is pictured signing for Mickelover Sports this weekend before the club's 2-1 reverse at home to leaders Altrincham in the EVO-STIK League's Premier Division.

An NPLFA spokesman said: "Congratulations to second year Mickleover Sports student Morgan Williams who has signed a contract with the Derbyshire club after impressing in the academy, reserves and more recently the first team.

"The central defender has been a huge success on and off the pitch during his time in the NPLFA, scoring the winning goal in the 2017 ‘NPLFA Grand Final’ and being named in the 2016-17 ‘NPLFA Team of the Year’. Well done Morgan and keep working hard!"

Two NPLFA students have also graduated to the pro game since its foundation, Yohan Rutty-Smith leading the way with a move to Notts County in February 2015 at the age of 16 and Matlock Town's Max Hunt following in his footsteps in July 2016 when he signed for Mansfield Town at the same age. He's since returned to the Gladiators and on Saturday became the NPLFA's 27th graduate when he played in the club's 2-1 win in the top flight at Lancaster City.

The EVO-STIK League's ground-breaking academy was founded with the backing of the Football Association at five pilot clubs in September 2014 to provide career pathways into the football industry with youngsters studying on two year BTEC courses.

Still the only league-wide academy in English football combining sport with education and expanded to 12 members clubs, the NPLFA is currently offering its fourth intake of students the chance to continue their education to degree level after teaming up with Loughborough College in the summer to launch a new higher education partnership.

When not studying, NPLFA students train on a daily basis with FA and UEFA qualified coaches and play in the Joma and Chyrso divisions of the NPL Youth League as well as competing in national cup competitions led by the FA Youth Cup.

To see the NPLFA's latest promotional videos and success stories, follow on Twitter at @NPLFA or visit: www.nplfa.co.uk.

To take a look at the full list of NPLFA footballing graduates click here: nplfa.co.uk/graduates/.

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