Football – Patrick Bamford
“The reason that I first started playing football is probably all down to my Dad. From a very young age we both went to watch Notts Forest play every home game and quite a few away. The reason why football is so special to me is because no matter the weather conditions, no matter the time of day, no matter any kind of stress I was having at school, football would always bring a smile to my face. Even if it was sometimes just kicking the ball against the wall in the garden, there’s nothing else I would rather be doing.
“Since I become older and football has transformed into a career as well as a passion and hobby, there is no better feeling than when you score a goal, especially given my favourite position as a striker.
“My career is only just starting and I consider that I’m at the foot of a very long ladder, the top of which I can’t yet see. I know that to get to the top, I’ve got to remain focused, determined and honest with myself.
“The career I’ve chosen isn’t an easy one to break into. I have to make sacrifices on a daily basis. I have to be disciplined and resolute. I will need to be lucky and remain injury-free, particularly at critical selection times. I have to accept the criticisms, rejections and knock backs, turning them around into positives and using them as incentives and targets.
“I have good, and in some cases, inspirational people around me giving good advice. I don’t just mean football people in this. My help is eclectic, ranging from education, nutrition, cycling, dancing, martial arts and conditioning. Many are retired elite athletes who have seen and done it all themselves. They always have a wealth of information, tips and advice to share with willing ears.
“I have always had good coaches that have gone the extra mile to assist me. This is even more relevant and my new club, Chelsea FC, where the ethos is simply to provide any help and support to ensure the individual achieves his full potential, both on and off the pitch.
“The one steadfast that I consider is essential for success at my age is a supportive, grounding, unconditionally loving family. I have this treasure in abundance.”///