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Tuesday, 20 February 2018
AN AFC Henley mini soccer graduate has been offered an U9 contract by Reading Football Club.
Eight-year-old Lucas Regueiro Rial will now train with the Championship club at their Category 1 Premier League Academy, rated as one of the best in the country.
The youngster, who lives in Henley and attends Badgemore School, was selected by Shelley Strange to attend the Reading summer trials. After being selected to train with the pre-academy group, he has continued to flourish before being offered a contract for the 2017/18 season.
AFC Henley have strong links with Reading FC academy via their head coach Strange, who works full time in the academy recruitment department.
Strange runs the Mini Soccer Centre at their Jubilee Park ground on Saturday mornings, giving youngsters the best guidance possible at a crucial stage in their development and this in turn provides a pathway and opportunities for any exceptionally talented players.
Lucasl — who has become the first AFC Henley player to sign for the academy — and his family were invited to the Reading versus Sheffield Wednesday match where he enjoyed warming up and meeting the players before walking out of the tunnel before the Royals’ 2-1 win. Speaking of Lucas’s contract, AFC Henley chairman Trevor Howell said: “I am delighted that our links with Reading are proving so positive for Lucas and his family.
“Shelley should be the first port of call for all aspiring parents and players. She will always offer realistic advice, since she knows better than anyone that only the most exceptional talent will make it and that there are no guarantees.”
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