Football – Lewis Chambers
“I started off my career when I was just five. I used to kick everything in my way, for example: stones, plastic bottles and mostly footballs. It was safe to say I was obsessed. I have always strived to be that one step better and with plenty of support from my family it make a whole it a whole lot easier.
“I went on trial to Notts County and Nottingham Forest at the age of nine and it was looking pleasing but unfortunately I had a minor injuries that set me back. Even at such a young age I was still determined not to give up and contacted Mansfield Town. I ended up signing there from U10s to U14s, unfortunately then I was released. I feel the rejection made me hungrier to succeed at some level or another.
“I decided to give it a season away from [football] academies and enjoy it with my mates and that is exatly what I did. When I just turned 16, I started again trying to go up the ladder by playing semi-pro standard for Carlton Town. I feel that playing with bigger, physical players made me improve as a player, then I got scouted for Doncaster Rovers by a scout at one of my games.
“I attended two trials, scoring several goals and they contacted me saying they would like to have a good look at me pre-season. A few days later my Dad rang telling me about a trial at Mansfield Town, my old club, and they invited me back for a chance to get into the youth team. I was delighted by this as it was an easy location and the best chance I had to getting down that successful road.
“In my three trials, I ended up having a very good performance, scoring an average of two goals per game. As a striker, scoring goals is our job, the manager gave me a contract and I, with the other signed players, had to attend a meeting.
“I have enjoyed my first season at Mansfield Town and have been contracted for another season. I have over 30+ individual trophies and over ten team trophies. I am hoping for a bit of luck and that breakthrough to boost my career in the future.”